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The reason-giving force of requests


Schaber, Peter (2021). The reason-giving force of requests. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, 24(2):431-442.

Abstract

How do we change the normative landscape by making requests? It will be argued that by making requests we create reasons for action if and only if certain conditions are met. We are able to create reasons if and only if doing so is valuable for the requester, and if they respect the requestee. Respectful requests have a normative force – it will be argued – because it is of instrumental value to us that we all have the normative power of creating reasons by making requests. The normative power has the potential for creating and shaping valuable interactions and relationships for the requester and the requestee. This potential could not be realized if we did not have the normative power of making requests. It will also be shown why this account of the normative force of requests should be preferred to the two alternative accounts of the reason-giving force of requests that have been put forward by James H.P. Lewis and David Enoch.

Abstract

How do we change the normative landscape by making requests? It will be argued that by making requests we create reasons for action if and only if certain conditions are met. We are able to create reasons if and only if doing so is valuable for the requester, and if they respect the requestee. Respectful requests have a normative force – it will be argued – because it is of instrumental value to us that we all have the normative power of creating reasons by making requests. The normative power has the potential for creating and shaping valuable interactions and relationships for the requester and the requestee. This potential could not be realized if we did not have the normative power of making requests. It will also be shown why this account of the normative force of requests should be preferred to the two alternative accounts of the reason-giving force of requests that have been put forward by James H.P. Lewis and David Enoch.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:01 Faculty of Theology > Center for Ethics
06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Philosophy
Dewey Decimal Classification:100 Philosophy
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > Philosophy
Social Sciences & Humanities > Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Philosophy, Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
Language:English
Date:1 April 2021
Deposited On:08 Apr 2021 07:54
Last Modified:08 Jun 2021 01:08
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:1386-2820
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s10677-021-10174-8
Related URLs:http://link.springer.com/journal/10677 (Publisher)

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