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date: 27 November 2020

Abstract and Keywords

An ethical theory is alienating if accepting the theory inhibits the agent from fitting participation in some normative ideal, such as some ideal of integrity, friendship, or community. Many normative ideals involve nonconsequentialist behavior of some form or another. If such ideals are normatively authoritative, they constitute counterexamples to consequentialism unless their authority can be explained or explained away. We address a range of attempts to avoid such counterexamples and argue that consequentialism cannot by itself account for the normative authority of all plausible such ideals. At best, consequentialism can find a more modest place in an ethical theory that includes nonconsequentialist principles with their own normative authority.

Keywords: alienation, commitment, motives, normative ideals, authority

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