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PROPOSITIONAL CLOTHING AND BELIEF

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Abstract

Moral discourse exhibits features often taken to constitute discourses that express propositions: e.g., its sentences can be intelligibly embedded in conditionals and other unasserted contexts. If to be a belief is just to be a mental state expressed by sentences that are propositionally clothed, then quasi-realism, the version of expressivism which accepts that moral discourse is propositionally clothed, is self-refuting. However, this view of belief, which I label ‘minimalism’, is false. I present three arguments against it and dismiss two possible defences (the first drawn from the work of Wright, the second given by Harcourt). The issue between expressivists and their opponents cannot be settled by the mere fact that moral discourse wears propositional clothing.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2007-07-01

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