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Title: Unique status of meta-ethical emotivism in Stevenson
Other Titles: Philosophical Papers, Journal of the Department of Philosophy, Vol. XVIII, March- 2022, pp- 78-90
Authors: Bhattacharyya, Anureema
Keywords: Meta-ethical emotivism
Issue Date: Mar-2022
Publisher: University of North Bengal
Abstract: The basic understanding of morality undoubtedly revolves round the situational aspects of the moral agents who form the subject of discussion. There cannot be any question about ethicality where the human agents are not involved. Now, concepts of ‗good‘ or ‗bad‘ are necessary to understand for the sake of answering normative queries; but, they are never appropriately comprehended from a non-subjective standpoint, as it is nothing without the subject which can be absolutely relevant in understanding the judgements passed by them. The physical world is a party to the discussion only because the moral agents sustain their existence through interacting with them, and thereby having a common interaction also with the environment of which they both form an indispensable part. Now, the question is- why are ethical questions asked or ethical judgements passed? It is precisely to express our attitude towards something thereby contributing in affecting the thoughts of others, or else in resolving disputes /disagreements rising out of differences in belief or attitudes. This purpose is effectively served only when the situational factors are understood in relation to the subject/subjects involved – i.e. in understanding the totality of the emergence of such contexts. Hence, comes the justification of introducing meta-ethics in the form of a comprehensive understanding of ethical language along with an understanding of the psychology behind use of the language, the background behind the use of such language, and hence the social role played by use of such language. This way of exercising ethics stands in sharp contrast to the normative approach of knowing what is ‗good‘, ‗bad‘ on the basis of some objectively set standards. Morality is subject-oriented, and because the existential situations of humans/subjects evolve in its domain, any bit of discussion on ethics is rendered pointless when dealt with in absolute objectivity. The focus of my paper is thus to study after C.L.Stevenson the purpose of doing metaethics as a wholesome study addressing the justification and practicality of the very existence of the discipline called Ethics.
ISSN: 0976-4496
Appears in Collections:Philosophical Papers. Vol 18 (March 2022)

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