John Broome: "Normativity in Reasoning"

December 29, 2014
Thursday, January 22, 2015 - 3:30pm
347 University Hall (Philosophy Common Room)
Photo of John Broome

Abstract for "Normativity in Reasoning"

Sometimes at least, reasoning is 'active'; it is something we do. What makes this so is that in active reasoning we operate on our conscious attitudes, following a rule. We are guided by the rule. This suggests that we must, at least implicitly, have a belief with the normative content that we ought to follow the rule, or have a reason to follow it.

I shall argue this is not so: no belief with a normative content is necessarily involved in active reasoning.

John Broome is the White's Professor of Moral Philosophy, Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford. His highly influential writings range over many topics in moral philosophy, including normative ethics and metaethics, and economics. In addition to numerous articles, he is the author of: Climate Matters: Ethics in a Warming WorldWeighing Lives; Ethics Out of Economics; Weighing Goods: Equality, Uncertainty, and Time; Counting the Cost of Global Warming; and The Microeconomics of Capitalism

This event is co-sponsored by the Philosophy Department. It is free and open to the public; registration is not required.

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