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date: 20 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The “debunker’s puzzle” asks how it could be that (i) moral non-naturalism is true, (ii) we have moral knowledge, and (iii) evolutionary forces have heavily shaped the workings of our moral faculty. This chapter begins by exploring a prominent attempt to dissolve the puzzle, so-called third-factor views, arguing that they are subject to a variety of objections. This discussion highlights a pivotal claim in the dialectic between debunkers and non-naturalists: the debunker’s puzzle has force against moral non-naturalism only if it incorporates an ambitious claim about how far evolutionary forces have operated on the workings of the moral faculty. Non-naturalists can plausibly reject such a strong claim. Still, debunkers can rightly reply that non-naturalists nonetheless lack an explanation regarding how our moral judgments are linked to normative reality. The chapter argues that, by appealing to constitutive explanations, non-naturalists have helpful things to say about what the link might be.

Keywords: debunker’s puzzle, evolutionary influence, moral knowledge, non-naturalism, third-factor views

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