Content-type: text/html Downes.ca ~ Stephen's Web ~ Moral Cognitivism vs. Non-Cognitivism

Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

Are moral statements the sort of things that can be true or false? I would imagine most people think so. They would say, for example, "'Stealing is wrong' is true." But is this the sort of thing that could be false? What would make it true or false? A moral non-cognitivist would say that nothing makes it true or false. When we say 'Stealing is wrong' we are not describing some fact about the world, we are describing (at best) our own feeling, intuition or sentiment, or perhaps nothing more than our acceptance of a social norm. A moral cognitivism believes the opposite, holding that there are some things that make moral statements true or false. I would classify myself as a moral non-cognitivist. Anyhow, this long article relates the many varieties of this position and the arguments for and against them. Image: Conscient Thoughts. Related: Rational Sentimentalism.

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada
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Last Updated: May 29, 2024 11:39 p.m.

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