120.S08.ethics.hndt2

120.S08.ethics.hndt2 - Philosophy 120(S08 MacLeod...

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Philosophy 120 (S08), MacLeod Metaethics, Studyguide 2 I. Fundamental Metaethical Questions dividing Subjectivists from Objectivists i. Is ethical error possible? Can you make errors in your judgments about which actions are right and which wrong? ii. Is the rightness or wrongness of a kind of action determined by something external to the person making the judgment? iii. Do your value judgments do something more than express personal attitudes and preferences? Are such judgments about something external to the person making the judgment? Crucial Point: In each case, the Subjectivist says “no” while the Objectivist says “yes.” II. Subjectivism A subjectivist about musical value thinks you can’t really be wrong in your judgments about which music is good because really such judgments are just about you and your preferences; when you make such judgments, you’re not answerable to any external authority. On the other hand, an objectivist about musical value would insist that you can make errors in musical value judgments, and that there is an external source deciding whether your judgments are in error. Many people are subjectivists about musical value and find objectivism about musical value undemocratic and elitist. Subjectivism about ethical value is less palatable, most people would say. Most people don’t want to say that the ethical status of torturing innocent children depends only on personal preference.
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