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date: 15 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores the prospects for justifying the somewhat widespread, somewhat firmly held sense that there is some moral advantage to untruthfully implicating over lying. The author calls this the “Difference Intuition.” The author defines lying in terms of asserting but remains open about what precise definition best captures our ordinary notion. The author defines implicating as one way of meaning something without asserting it. The author narrows down the kind of untruthful implicating that should be compared with lying for purposes of evaluating whether there is a moral difference between them. Just as lying requires a robust form of assertion, so the kind of untruthful implicating to be compared with lying requires a robust form of implicating. Next, the author sets out various ways of sharpening the Difference Intuition and surveys a range of approaches to justifying one class of sharpenings. The author finishes by sketching an approach to justifying an alternative sharpening of the Difference Intuition, which is inspired by John Stuart Mill’s discussion of lying.

Keywords: assertion, lying, implicating, ethics of lying and deception, lying/misleading distinction

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