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Jeremy Koons
Georgetown University
  1.  20
    The Ethics of Wilfrid Sellars.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2018 - New York, USA: Routledge.
    Wilfrid Sellars’s ethical theory was rich and deeply innovative. On Sellars’s view, moral judgments express a special kind of shared intention. Thus, we should see Sellars as an early advocate of an expressivism of plans and intentions, and an early theorist of collective intentionality. He supplemented this theory with a sophisticated logic of intentions, a robust theory of the categorical validity of normative expressions, a subtle way of reconciling the cognitive and motivating aspects of moral judgment, and much more— all (...)
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  2. The Normative and the Natural.Michael Padraic Wolf & Jeremy Randel Koons - 2016 - New York: Palgrave.
    Drawing on a rich pragmatist tradition, this book offers an account of the different kinds of ‘oughts’, or varieties of normativity, that we are subject to contends that there is no conflict between normativity and the world as science describes it. The authors argue that normative claims aim to evaluate, to urge us to do or not do something, and to tell us how a state of affairs ought to be. These claims articulate forms of action-guidance that are different in (...)
     
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  3.  38
    The Ordinary Language Case for Contextualism and the Relevance of Radical Doubt.Michael P. Wolf & Jeremy Randel Koons - 2018 - Contemporary Pragmatism 15 (1):66-94.
    Many contextualist accounts in epistemology appeal to ordinary language and everyday practice as grounds for positing a low-standards knowledge (knowledgeL) that contrasts with high-standards prevalent in epistemology (knowledgeH). We compare these arguments to arguments from the height of “ordinary language” philosophy in the mid 20th century and find that all such arguments face great difficulties. We find a powerful argument for the legitimacy and necessity of knowledgeL (but not of knowledgeH). These appeals to practice leave us with reasons to accept (...)
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  4. Plantinga on Properly Basic Belief in God: Lessons From the Epistemology of Perception.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2011 - Philosophical Quarterly 61 (245):839-850.
    Plantinga famously argues against evidentialism that belief in God can be properly basic. But the epistemology of cognitive faculties such as perception and memory which produce psychologically non-inferential beliefs shows that various inferentially justified theoretical beliefs are epistemically prior to our memory and perceptual beliefs, preventing the latter from being epistemically basic. Plantinga's analogy between the sensus divinitatis and these cognitive faculties suggests that the deliverances of the sensus divinitatis cannot be properly basic either. Objections by and on behalf of (...)
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  5.  18
    Sellars on compatibilism and the consequence argument.Jeremy Randel Koons - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-29.
    No contemporary compatibilist account of free will can be complete unless it engages with the consequence argument. I will argue that Wilfrid Sellars offered an ingenious version of compatibilism that can be used to refute the consequence argument. Unfortunately, owing to the opacity of Sellars’s writings on free will, his solution has been neglected. I will reconstruct his view here, demonstrating how it represents a powerful challenge to the consequence argument and tying it to some recent developments in the compatibilist (...)
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  6.  42
    Knowledge as a Collective Status.Jeremy Randel Koons - forthcoming - Analytic Philosophy.
    While social epistemology is a diverse field, much of it still understands knowledge as an individual status—albeit an individual status that crucially depends on various social factors (such as testimony). Further, the literature on group knowledge until now has primarily focused on limited, specialized groups that may be said to know this or that as a group. I wish to argue, to the contrary, that all knowledge-attributions ascribe a collective status; and that this follows more or less directly from an (...)
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  7. Is Hard Determinism a Form of Compatibilism?Jeremy Randel Koons - 2002 - Philosophical Forum 33 (1):81-99.
    Most philosophers now concede that libertarianism has failed as an account of free will. Assuming the correctness of this concession, that leaves compatibilism and hard determinism as the only remaining choices in the free will debate. In this paper, I will argue that hard determinism turns out to be a form of compatibilism, and therefore, compatibilism is the only remaining position in the free will debate. I will attempt to establish this conclusion by arguing that hard determinists will end up (...)
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  8.  96
    Disenchanting the World: McDowell, Sellars, and Rational Constraint by Perception.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2004 - Journal of Philosophical Research 29 (February):125-152.
    In his book Mind and World, John McDowell grapples with the problem that the world must and yet seemingly cannot constrain our empirical thought. I first argue that McDowell’s proposed solution to the problem throws him onto the horns of his own, intractable dilemma, and thus fails to solve the problem of rational constraint by the world. Next, I will argue that Wilfrid Sellars, in a series of articles written in the 1950s and 60s, provides the tools to solve the (...)
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  9. Why Response-Dependence Theories of Morality Are False.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2003 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 6 (3):275-294.
    Many response-dependence theorists equate moral truth with the generation of some affective psychological response: what makes this action wrong, as opposed to right, is that it would cause (or merit) affective response of type R (perhaps under ideal conditions). Since our affective nature is purely contingent, and not necessarily shared by all rational creatures (or even by all humans), response-dependence threatens to lead to relativism. In this paper, I will argue that emotional responses and moral features do not align in (...)
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  10.  36
    A Fatal Dilemma For Direct Realist Foundationalism.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2015 - Journal of Philosophical Research 40:405-440.
    Direct realist versions of foundationalism have recently been advocated by Pryor, Huemer, Alston, and Plantinga. DRF can hold either that our foundational observation beliefs are about the simple perceptible qualities of objects, or that our foundational observation beliefs are more complex ones about objects in the world. I will show that whether our observational beliefs are simple or complex, the agent must possess other epistemically significant states in order for these observational beliefs to be justified. These other states are therefore (...)
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  11.  54
    Emotions and Incommensurable Moral Concepts.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2001 - Philosophy 76 (4):585-604.
    Many authors have argued that emotions serve an epistemic role in our moral practice. Some argue that this epistemic connection is so strong that creatures who do not share our affective nature will be unable to grasp our moral concepts. I argue that even if this sort of incommensurability does result from the role of affect in morality, incommensurability does not in itself entail relativism. In any case, there is no reason to suppose that one must share our emotions and (...)
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  12.  96
    An Argument Against Reduction in Morality and Epistemology.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2006 - Philosophical Investigations 29 (3):250–274.
    Many naturalistically-minded philosophers want to accomplish a naturalistic reduction of normative (e.g. moral and epistemic) claims. Mindful of avoiding the naturalistic fallacy, such philosophers claim that they are not reducing moral and epistemic concepts or definitions. Rather, they are only reducing the extension of these normative terms, while admitting that the concepts possess a normative content that cannot be naturalistically reduced. But these philosophers run into a serious problem. I will argue that normative claims possess two dimensions of normativity. I (...)
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  13. Do Normative Facts Need to Explain?Jeremy Randel Koons - 2000 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 81 (3):246–272.
    Much moral skepticism stems from the charge that moral facts do not figure in causal explanations. However, philosophers committed to normative epistemological discourse (by which I mean our practice of evaluating beliefs as justified or unjustified, and so forth) are in no position to demand that normative facts serve such a role, since epistemic facts are causally impotent as well. I argue instead that pragmatic reasons can justify our continued participation in practices which, like morality and epistemology, do not serve (...)
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  14. A Conditional Defense of Moral Realism.Jeremy Randel Koons - 1998 - Dissertation, Georgetown University
    Most philosophers endorse our epistemic practice of evaluating beliefs and methods of inquiry as justified or unjustified, rational or irrational; far fewer, though, think our practice of moral evaluation is viable. I contend that this difference in attitude toward epistemic and moral practice reveals an underlying double standard. I argue that the standards set by influential moral anti-realist arguments are not met by our practices of epistemic justification, and that the adoption of these standards would therefore force us to abandon (...)
     
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  15.  32
    Consensus and Excellence of Reasons.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2003 - Journal of Philosophical Research 28:83-103.
    It is plausible to suppose that the normativity of evaluative (e.g., moral and epistemic) judgments arises out of and is, in some sense, dependent on our actual evaluative practice. At the same time, though, it seems likely that the correctness of evaluative judgments is not merely a matter of what the underlying practice endorses and condemns; denial of this leads one into a rather objectionable form of relativism. In this paper, I will explore a social practice account of normativity according (...)
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  16.  31
    Sellars, Givenness, and Epistemic Priority.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2006 - In Michael P. Wolf (ed.), Poznan Studies in the Philosophy of the Sciences and the Humanities. pp. 147-172.
    Recent critics of Sellars's argument against the Given attack Sellars's conclusion that sensations cannot play a role in the justification of observation beliefs. I maintain that Sellars can concede that sensations play a role in justifying observation reports without being forced to concede that they have the foundational status of an epistemic Given. However, Sellars's own arguments that observation reports rest, in some sense, on other empirical beliefs are not sufficiently well-developed; nor are his comments concerning internalism, which is crucial (...)
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  17.  19
    Do Normative Facts Need to Explain?Jeremy Randel Koons - 2000 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 81 (3):246-272.
    Much moral skepticism stems from the charge that moral facts do not figure in causal explanations. However, philosophers committed to normative epistemological discourse are in no position to demand that normative facts serve such a role, since epistemic facts are causally impotentas well. I argue instead that pragmatic reasons can justify our continued participation in practices which, like morality and epistemology, do not servethe function of causal explanation.
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  18.  17
    Reasons From Within: Desires and Values, by Alan H. Goldman.: Book Reviews. [REVIEW]Jeremy Randel Koons - 2013 - Mind 122 (488):1086-1091.
  19.  9
    Consensus and Excellence of Reasons.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2003 - Journal of Philosophical Research 28:83-103.
    It is plausible to suppose that the normativity of evaluative judgments arises out of and is, in some sense, dependent on our actual evaluative practice. At the same time, though, it seems likely that the correctness of evaluative judgments is not merely a matter of what the underlying practice endorses and condemns; denial of this leads one into a rather objectionable form of relativism. In this paper, I will explore a social practice account of normativity according to which normativity is (...)
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  20.  7
    Disenchanting the World: McDowell, Sellars, and Rational Constraint by Perception.Jeremy Randel Koons - 2004 - Journal of Philosophical Research 29:125-152.
    In his book Mind and World, John McDowell grapples with the problem that the world must and yet seemingly cannot constrain our empirical thought. I first argue that McDowell’s proposed solution to the problem throws him onto the horns of his own, intractable dilemma, and thus fails to solve the problem of rational constraint by the world. Next, I will argue that Wilfrid Sellars, in a series of articles written in the 1950s and 1960s, provides the tools to solve the (...)
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  21.  1
    Knowledge as a Collective Status.Jeremy Randel Koons - forthcoming - Wiley: Analytic Philosophy.
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