Ethical Intuitionism is a book (hardcover release: , paperback release: ) by University of Colorado philosophy professor Michael Huemer. Michael Huemer. University of Colorado, Boulder. Abstract. This book defends a form of ethical intuitionism, according to which (i) there are objective moral. In recent years there has been a resurgence of interest in Ethical Intuitionism, ( ), Bedke (), Huemer (), Shafer-Landau (), Stratton-lake.

Author: Voodoozuru Kesida
Country: Fiji
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Environment
Published (Last): 11 July 2010
Pages: 325
PDF File Size: 20.65 Mb
ePub File Size: 20.11 Mb
ISBN: 630-5-82848-576-1
Downloads: 1182
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Fenrigore

For instance, one might think that people’s moral intuitions vary too much to be reliable indicators of truth, or that in morality emotions can distort our intuitions. Some philosophers think that there could be no moral facts as intuitionists understand these. I am not sure how I would go about checking on the reliability of introspection by non-introspective means, and I do not believe I have ever done so.

Intuitionism in Ethics (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

One might even know a self-evident proposition whilst endorsing a theory according to which no propositions are self-evident. For with this understanding of an intuition we can say that what justifies our belief in a self-evident proposition is that it seems true, just as we might say that what justifies us in having some experiential belief is that perceptually, the world seems to be that way. These hudmer states should not be allowed to supplant the real objects in our philosophy; their central function is that of vehicles of the awareness of external things.

Consider the following three cases: He denied, however, that the stringency, or weight, of these different prima facie duties is self-evident But if moral properties are causally impotent, then causal interaction could not hkemer why certain things seem to the intellect to be true. The first thing to note is that a self-evident proposition is not the same as an obvious truth.


An adequate understanding nituitionism necessary for one to be justified in this way, but this is not because understanding provides justification; rather, it is because it is needed to get the proposition clearly in view, and so enables a clear intuition of it. Consider a pair of statements of the form.

Intuitionism in Ethics

One might doubt that there are any such reasons. And we cannot confirm that memories are reliable signs of past events, since we have no means independent of memory of accessing the past. All that has happened, is that the original, non-inferential justification provided by the intuition has been restored.

Therefore, Socrates is inconsiderate.

Ethical Intuitionism (book) – Wikipedia

If he fell onto the track he would be killed, but would derail the trolley thus saving the five people on the track. What we ought to do is determined by all of these facts, and how they weigh up against each other. Once the process of reflective equilibrium is under way some adjustments will have to be made. Second, it is doubtful that all of our non-moral knowledge can be checked in intuitiojism sense required by the objection. When one perceives a physical object, one is prima facie justified in believing some things about the object, things that can be perceptually discerned.

Contrast the following two statements: A proposition is just self-evident, not self-evident to someone. The difference in people’s intuitions between Bridge and Trap Door casts serious doubt on the deontologist’s explanation of the difference in their intuitions about Switch and Bridge.

But that starting point is neither natural nor supported by any good arguments. Therefore, good and bad do exist.


5 Moral Knowledge

Therefore, good and bad do not exist. All of these naturalistic definitions would fail the open question argument. The relationship between the two arguments is symmetric: For Huemer, ‘appearance’ “is a broad category that includes mental states involved in perception, memory, introspection, and intellection” p.

But we cannot give such a reason without relying on sense perception, memory, introspection, reason–or in general, on some source. The first group consists of general evaluative remarks to which one might appeal in argument, such as ‘enjoyment is better than suffering’ or ‘it is unjust to punish an innocent person’. Enjoyment is better than suffering.

Moral good and bad, if they exist, would be intrinsically motivating–that is, things that any rational being would necessarily be motivated to pursue in the case of good or avoid in the case of bad.

Rather, my theory of justification was given in sections 5. These properties are, they maintained, simple, non-natural properties. In inthitionism far as this is a concept of a natural substance, the empirical sciences are far better suited to tell us the nature of this substance than a priori reflection. Since the basis of their moral disagreement is this disagreement about the relevant neurological fact, if they agreed on this non-moral fact, we could expect them to agree about the permissibility of boiling lobsters alive.