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International Philosophical Quarterly

Volume 56, Issue 4, December 2016

Christopher B. Kulp
Pages 487-502

Disagreement and the Defensibility of Moral Intuitionism

This paper takes up the Disagreement Objection to Moral Intuitionism, which is roughly this: If moral intuitions conflict, there must be falsehood somewhere. But there is no respectable way to resolve such conflict because there is no respectable way to choose between intuitions. Therefore, moral intuitions cannot serve their intended role of grounding justified moral belief and knowledge. This paper rebuts the Disagreement Objection: it recommends a doxastic interpretation of moral intuitions and argues that we have many resources to adjudicate intuitional conflict. I develop analogies between intuitional and non-intuitional disagreement, and I develop the concept of an intuitional background to show how intuitional disagreement may be resolved. The paper diagnoses the genesis of the Disagreement Objection as largely based on the Fallacy of Perspectival Infallibility and on an instance of the Justification Isolation Fallacy. The Disagreement Objection does not refute Moral Intuitionism.

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