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Morality through Thick and Thin: A Critical Notice of Ethics and the Limits of Philosophy *

Samuel Scheffler

in Boundaries and Allegiances: Problems of Justice and Responsibility in Liberal Thought

Published in print:
2002
Published Online:
November 2003
ISBN:
9780199257676
eISBN:
9780191600197
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/0199257671.003.0012
Subject:
Political Science, Political Theory

In Ethics and the Limits of Philosophy, Bernard Williams criticizes the ‘morality system’ and the associated philosophical enterprise of constructing ethical theories. Williams argues that we would ... More


Thick Concepts: Where’s Evaluation? 1

Pekka Väyrynen

in Oxford Studies in Metaethics Volume 7

Published in print:
2012
Published Online:
September 2012
ISBN:
9780199653492
eISBN:
9780191741661
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199653492.003.0008
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy

This chapter presents an alternative to the standard view that at least some of the evaluations that the so-called “thick” terms and concepts in ethics may be used to convey belong to their sense or ... More


Thick Concepts and Internal Reasons

Ulrike Heuer

in Luck, Value, and Commitment: Themes From the Ethics of Bernard Williams

Published in print:
2012
Published Online:
September 2012
ISBN:
9780199599325
eISBN:
9780191741500
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199599325.003.0009
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy

In his influential discussion of thick concepts Williams argues that the facts that make judgements, which apply thick concepts correctly, true, provide reasons for action — albeit only for the ... More


The Primacy of Good

Talbot Brewer

in The Retrieval of Ethics

Published in print:
2009
Published Online:
May 2009
ISBN:
9780199557882
eISBN:
9780191720918
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199557882.003.0006
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy

How should we characterize the quarry of practical thought? Some hold that practical thinking must ultimately find some non‐evaluative fact to be a reason for action. Some have affirmed a ... More


Why Thick Concepts Matter

Pekka Väyrynen

in The Lewd, the Rude and the Nasty: A Study of Thick Concepts in Ethics

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780199314751
eISBN:
9780199369225
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199314751.003.0001
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy

The chapter introduces the intuitive contrast between thick and thin terms and concepts. It explains why thick concepts matter by introducing a wide range of general issues in moral philosophy for ... More


Thick Concepts

Matti Eklund

in Choosing Normative Concepts

Published in print:
2017
Published Online:
September 2017
ISBN:
9780198717829
eISBN:
9780191787331
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/oso/9780198717829.003.0009
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy, Metaphysics/Epistemology

The discussion up to here has focused on central, or thin, normative concepts. The present chapter focuses on thick concepts and discusses how the conceptual framework introduced can be used to ... More


Legal as a Thick Concept *

David Enoch and Kevin Toh

in Philosophical Foundations of the Nature of Law

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
May 2013
ISBN:
9780199675517
eISBN:
9780191757280
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199675517.003.0012
Subject:
Law, Philosophy of Law

Some features of legal judgments suggest that a descriptivist characterization of them would be apt, whereas some other features invite a normativist characterization. A characterization of legal ... More


Through Thick and Thin

Simon Blackburn

in Practical Tortoise Raising: and other philosophical essays

Published in print:
2010
Published Online:
January 2011
ISBN:
9780199548057
eISBN:
9780191594953
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199548057.003.0008
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy, Metaphysics/Epistemology

This chapter gives a nuanced account of the phenomena which have led moral theorists to explore so-called ‘thick concepts’. It argues that the phenomena are far more deeply embedded in linguistic ... More


Thick Concepts, Analysis, and Reductionism

Edward Harcourt and Alan Thomas

in Thick Concepts

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
May 2013
ISBN:
9780199672349
eISBN:
9780191751325
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672349.003.0002
Subject:
Philosophy, Aesthetics, Moral Philosophy

The paper opens by criticizing the way the ‘problem of thick concepts’ has sometimes been formulated in the recent literature, and arguing for the need to pose it in a way that is genuinely neutral ... More


Thick Concepts and Thick Descriptions

Simon Kirchin

in Thick Concepts

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
May 2013
ISBN:
9780199672349
eISBN:
9780191751325
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672349.003.0004
Subject:
Philosophy, Aesthetics, Moral Philosophy

This paper has two overall aims. First, to compare Bernard Williams's account of thick concepts with Gilbert Ryle's account of thick descriptions. Secondly, to indicate one important way of arguing ... More


Introduction: Thick and Thin Concepts

Simon Kirchin

in Thick Concepts

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
May 2013
ISBN:
9780199672349
eISBN:
9780191751325
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672349.003.0001
Subject:
Philosophy, Aesthetics, Moral Philosophy

This opening chapter introduces readers to many of the main controversies concerning thick and thin concepts, such as the ‘disentangling argument’, the division between thick and thin concepts, and ... More


Thick Concepts and Underdetermination

Pekka Väyrynen

in Thick Concepts

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
May 2013
ISBN:
9780199672349
eISBN:
9780191751325
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672349.003.0008
Subject:
Philosophy, Aesthetics, Moral Philosophy

Thick terms and concepts in ethics (for example, ‘selfish’, ‘cruel’ and ‘courageous’) somehow combine evaluation and non-evaluative description. The non-evaluative aspects of thick terms and concepts ... More


Thick Concepts

Simon Kirchin (ed.)

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
May 2013
ISBN:
9780199672349
eISBN:
9780191751325
Item type:
book
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672349.001.0001
Subject:
Philosophy, Aesthetics, Moral Philosophy

There seems to be an interesting difference between judging someone to be good and judging them to be kind. Both judgements are typically positive, but the latter seems to offer more description of ... More


Against the Semantic View I: THE DATA

Pekka Väyrynen

in The Lewd, the Rude and the Nasty: A Study of Thick Concepts in Ethics

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780199314751
eISBN:
9780199369225
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199314751.003.0003
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy

The chapter explains the book’s basic methodology: to rely as much as possible only on standard general methods from linguistics and philosophy of language. A wide range of linguistic data are ... More


Practical Concepts

Jonathan Dancy

in Thick Concepts

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
May 2013
ISBN:
9780199672349
eISBN:
9780191751325
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672349.003.0003
Subject:
Philosophy, Aesthetics, Moral Philosophy

This paper builds on an earlier paper, ‘In Defence of Thick Concepts’, in which it was denied that instantiations of a thick concept invoke a single attitudinal response, and always the same one. The ... More


The Lewd, the Rude and the Nasty: A Study of Thick Concepts in Ethics

Pekka Vayrynen

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780199314751
eISBN:
9780199369225
Item type:
book
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199314751.001.0001
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy

In addition to “thin” concepts like the good, the bad and the ugly, our evaluative thought and talk appeals to “thick” concepts like the lewd and the rude, the selfish and the cruel, the courageous ... More


Thick Concepts, Meaning and Evaluation

Pekka Väyrynen

in The Lewd, the Rude and the Nasty: A Study of Thick Concepts in Ethics

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780199314751
eISBN:
9780199369225
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199314751.003.0002
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy

The chapter lays important background by making explicit the notions of evaluation and meaning with which the book’s arguments will operate. Evaluation is taken as information to the effect that ... More


Normative Concepts

Matti Eklund

in Choosing Normative Concepts

Published in print:
2017
Published Online:
September 2017
ISBN:
9780198717829
eISBN:
9780191787331
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/oso/9780198717829.003.0004
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy, Metaphysics/Epistemology

What is it for a concept to be normative? Some possible answers are explored and rejected, among them that a concept is normative if it ascribes a normative property. The positive answer defended is ... More


Thick Epistemic Concepts

Debbie Roberts

in Metaepistemology

Published in print:
2018
Published Online:
December 2018
ISBN:
9780198805366
eISBN:
9780191843433
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/oso/9780198805366.003.0010
Subject:
Philosophy, Metaphysics/Epistemology

In metaethics, there is a range of different views of the nature of thick concepts. At one extreme are views holding that thick concepts are irreducibly thick, and that this has important ... More


The Absolute Conception: Putnam vs. Williams

Simon Blackburn

in Practical Tortoise Raising: and other philosophical essays

Published in print:
2010
Published Online:
January 2011
ISBN:
9780199548057
eISBN:
9780191594953
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:
10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199548057.003.0014
Subject:
Philosophy, Moral Philosophy, Metaphysics/Epistemology

This chapter considers the opposition between Bernard Williams and Hilary Putnam over whether science, unlike other activities, aspires to an absolute conception of the world which is to the greatest ... More


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