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    Cowie, Christopher 2014. Epistemic Disagreement and Practical Disagreement. Erkenntnis, Vol. 79, Issue. 1, p. 191.

    Shockley, Kenneth 2013. International Encyclopedia of Ethics.

    Postema, Gerald J. 2008. Salience Reasoning. Topoi, Vol. 27, Issue. 1-2, p. 41.

    Shockley, Kenneth 2007. Programming Collective Control. Journal of Social Philosophy, Vol. 38, Issue. 3, p. 442.


Two Sources of Morality*

  • Philip Pettit (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 January 2009

This essay emerges from consideration of a question in the epistemology of ethics or morality. This is not the common claim-centered question as to how moral claims are confirmed and whether their mode of confirmation gives us grounds to be confident about the prospects for ethical discourse. Instead, I am concerned with the less frequently posed concept-centered question of where in human experience moral terms or concepts are grounded — that is, where in experience the moral becomes salient to us. This question was central to moral epistemology in the form it took among thinkers such as Locke, Hume, and Kant, and it remains of the first importance today.

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Christine M. Korsgaard , The Sources of Normativity (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1996)

Christine M. Korsgaard , “Self-Constitution in the Ethics of Plato and Kant,” Journal of Ethics 3, no. 1 (1999): 129.

Gerald J. Postema , “Morality in the First Person Plural,” Law and Philosophy 14, no. 1 (1995): 3564.

Frank Jackson and Philip Pettit , “Moral Functionalism and Moral Motivation,” Philosophical Quarterly 45, no. 178 (1995): 2040

Frank Jackson and Philip Pettit , “A Question for Expressivism,” Analysis 58, no. 4 (1998): 239–51.

Philip Pettit , The Common Mind: An Essay on Psychology, Society, and Politics (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993), chap. 1

Philip Pettit and Michael Smith , “Freedom in Belief and Desire,” Journal of Philosophy 93, no. 6 (1996): 429–49

Philip Pettit , “A Theory of Normal and Ideal Conditions,” Philosophical Studies 96, no. 1 (1999): 2144.

Philip Pettit , “The Virtual Reality of Homo Economicus,” The Monist 78, no. 3 (1995): 308–29.

Geoffrey Sayre-McCord , “On Why Hume's ‘General Point of View’ Isn't Ideal — and Shouldn't Be,” Social Philosophy and Policy 11, no. 1 (1994): 202–28

J. L. Mackie , Hume's Moral Theory (London: Routledge, 1980)

R. M. Sainsbury , “Projections and Relations,” The Monist 81, no. 1 (1998): 133–60

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Social Philosophy and Policy
  • ISSN: 0265-0525
  • EISSN: 1471-6437
  • URL: /core/journals/social-philosophy-and-policy
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