Authors
Eleonora Severini
Universita' degli Studi di Pavia
Fabio Sterpetti
Università degli Studi di Roma La Sapienza
Abstract
The aim of this article is to explore the impact of Darwinism in metaethics and dispel some of the confusion surrounding it. While the prospects for a Darwinian metaethics appear to be improving, some underlying epistemological issues remain unclear. We will focus on the so-called Evolutionary Debunking Arguments (EDAs) which, when applied in metaethics, are defined as arguments that appeal to the evolutionary origins of moral beliefs so as to undermine their epistemic justification. The point is that an epistemic disanalogy can be identified in the debate on EDAs between moral beliefs and other kinds of beliefs, insofar as only the former are regarded as vulnerable to EDAs. First, we will analyze some significant debunking positions in metaethics in order to show that they do not provide adequate justification for such an epistemic disanalogy. Then, we will assess whether they can avoid the accusation of being epistemically incoherent by adopting the same evolutionary account for all kinds of beliefs. In other words, once it is argued that Darwinism has a corrosive impact on metaethics, what if its universal acid cannot be contained?
Keywords Darwinism  Metaethics  Epistemic justification  Evolutionary debunking arguments  Moral realism  Scepticism
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DOI 10.1007/s40656-017-0154-1
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