Human Action and Moral Realism

Faculty/Professorship: Philosophy  
Author(s): De Anna, Gabriele
Title of the Journal: Etica & politica = Ethics & politics
ISSN: 1825-5167
Corporate Body: Università di Trieste, Dipartimento di Filosofia
Publisher Information: Trieste
Year of publication: 2017
Volume: 19
Issue: 2
Pages: 25-38
Language(s): English
Widely accepted accounts of human action strongly suggest that actions can only be identified from the first personal perspective, i.e. from the point of view of the reasons that motivate an agent. That view has important consequences for moral realism, since it seems to entail that values are subjective: constructivist views of value would then be the only viable accounts of moral experience that does justice to claims of objectivity. This essay suggests that moral realism can still be maintained, if it understood as the existence of a fitness between potentialities existing in reality and volitional powers of well-functioning human agents. On the basis of the acceptance of the first-personal account of reasons for action and of some basic normative intuitions, the essay argues that an agent has to make room for the possibility that the way in which he responds to facts may be inadequate. On the other hand, that is possible – it is argued – if and only if there are correct and incorrect ways of responding to facts, i.e. there are ways in which well-functioning human beings respond to facts.
Keywords: Action, Good, Reasons, Constructivism, Moral realism
Peer Reviewed: Ja
International Distribution: Ja
Open Access Journal: Ja
Type: Article
Year of publication: 5. July 2018