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Intuition and Its Place in Ethics

  • ROBERT AUDI (a1)


This paper provides a multifaceted account of intuition. The paper integrates apparently disparate conceptions of intuition, shows how the notion has figured in epistemology as well as in intuitionistic ethics, and clarifies the relation between the intuitive and the self-evident. Ethical intuitionism is characterized in ways that, in phenomenology, epistemology, and ontology, represent an advance over the position of W. D. Ross while preserving its commonsense normative core and intuitionist character. This requires clarifying the sense in which intuitions are non-inferential and explaining how self-evident principles may be maintained without dogmatism, how intuition is significantly analogous to perception, and how rational disagreements can extend even to the self-evident. The paper distinguishes between two orders of normative disagreement, shows how intuition can contribute to resolving normative disagreements, and represents ethical intuitionism as capable of modified forms that depart from its traditional claims in being neutral with respect to both ethical naturalism and metaphysical realism.



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Journal of the American Philosophical Association
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  • EISSN: 2053-4485
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