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“Part of the Very Concept”: Wittgensteinian Moral Philosophy

Authors

  • Drew Carter

    Corresponding author
    1. The University of Adelaide
      School of Population Health and Clinical Practice, Mail drop DX 650 550, The University of Adelaide, Australia 5005, drew.carter@adelaide.edu.au
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School of Population Health and Clinical Practice, Mail drop DX 650 550, The University of Adelaide, Australia 5005, drew.carter@adelaide.edu.au

Abstract

X is “part of the very concept” of Y. This formulation recurs throughout Raimond Gaita's philosophy and informs Christopher Cordner's. I elucidate the formulation's meaning and the nature of the necessity posited, then conclude with a criticism. One cannot love evil. One cannot love cow dung. For Gaita, these claims differ in type. The first testifies to a conceptual relation, but the second to a “mere fact.” I see no clear basis for assigning to claims one type over another, which challenges the footing of Wittgensteinian moral philosophy. Why do no moral“mere facts” partly define our form of life?

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