Canadian Journal of Philosophy 48 (6):793-811 (2018)

Chad Lee-Stronach
Stanford University
Many moral theories are committed to the idea that some kinds of moral considerations should be respected, whatever the cost to ‘lesser’ types of considerations. A person's life, for instance, should not be sacrificed for the trivial pleasures of others, no matter how many would benefit. However, according to the decision-theoretic critique of lexical priority theories, accepting lexical priorities inevitably leads us to make unacceptable decisions in risky situations. It seems that to operate in a risky world, we must reject lexical priorities altogether. This paper argues that lexical priority theories can, in fact, offer satisfactory guidance in risky situations. It does so by equipping lexical priority theories with overlooked resources from decision theory.
Keywords lexical priority  moral absolutism  risk  decision theory  moral aggregation
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Reprint years 2018
DOI 10.1080/00455091.2017.1415104
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References found in this work BETA

Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals.Immanuel Kant - 2002 [1785] - Oxford University Press.
Probability and the Logic of Rational Belief.Henry E. Kyburg Jr - 1961 - Middletown, CT, USA: Wesleyan University Press.

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Citations of this work BETA

Limited Aggregation and Risk.Seth Lazar - 2018 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 46 (2):117-159.
Headaches for Epistemologists.Brian Talbot - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
Morality, Uncertainty.Chad Lee-Stronach - 2021 - Philosophical Quarterly 71 (2):334-358.

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