PHIL 440:  STUDY QUESTIONS ON KORSGAARD, HAMPTON, AND NAGEL

 

 

Study Questions on Korsgaard:

 

1.  What does Korsgaard mean by content skepticism and motivational skepticism?  Which one is her paper about?

 

2.  What does Korsgaard mean by an internalist and an externalist moral theory? 

 

3.  Korsgaard provides an analogy to theoretical reasoning (reasoning about what it is rational to believe).  What is the analogy?  What does it show?

 

4.  What is Korsgaard's internalism requirement for practical reason?  [Hint:  It is not the same as Williams's claim that all practical reasons are internal reasons, in his sense.  Why not?]  How does this internalism requirement differ from her earlier use of “internalist” discussed in the previous question?  

 

5. What is Korsgaard’s analogy with theoretical reason intended to show?  Hint:  What is the analogous internalism requirement for theoretical reason?

 

6. What are Korsgaard's examples of the prudent person and the determined or resolute person intended to show?

 

7.  What does Korsgaard mean by "true irrationality"?

 

8.  What is Korsgaard's reply to Williams?

 

9.  What does Korsgaard mean when she says, "The necessity is in the law, not in us"?

 

 

 

Study Questions on Nagel

 

1.  What is the "view from nowhere"?

 

2.  What is the difference between agent-neutral and agent-relative reasons?  What is the difference between agent-neutral and agent-relative values?

 

3.  What is the difference between an internal reason and an external reason, as Nagel uses the terms?

 

4.  Does Nagel believe that there are any agent-neutral values?  Explain.

 

5.  Does Nagel believe that there are any external values?  Explain.

 

 

Questions on Hampton:

 

6.  What does Hampton mean by "the revisers" and "the overhaulers"?

 

7.  What does Hampton mean by a norm?

 

8.  How does Hampton use the "companions in guilt" strategy?

 

9.  What does Hampton mean when she says, "To be able to reason instrumentally, we must be able to reason non-instrumentally?  [For your information, transitivity is the requirement that one not prefer A to B and B to C and C to A.]

 

10.  What is Hampton's Consequentialist Norm?  [We will call it the Instrumentalist Norm.]

 

11.  What does the example of Hampton's curmudgeon show about the Instrumentalist Norm?