The Meaning of 'Ought' : Beyond Descriptivism and Expressivism in Metaethics Hardback
Part of the Oxford Moral Theory series
The word 'ought' is one of the core normative terms, but it is also a modal word.
In this book Matthew Chrisman develops a careful account of the semantics of 'ought' as a modal operator, and uses this to motivate a novel inferentialist account of why ought-sentences have the meaning that they have.
This is a metanormative account that agrees with traditional descriptivist theories in metaethics that specifying the truth-conditions of normative sentences is a centralpart of the explanation of their meaning.
But Chrisman argues that this leaves important metasemantic questions about what it is in virtue of which ought-sentences have the meanings that they have unanswered.
His appeal to inferentialism aims to provide a viable anti-descriptivist but alsoanti-expressivist answer to these questions.
- Format: Hardback
- Pages: 280 pages
- Publisher: Oxford University Press Inc
- Publication Date: 10/12/2015
- Category: Philosophy of language
- ISBN: 9780199363001