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Judith Jarvis Thomson's Normativity is a study of normative thought. She brings out that normative thought is not restricted to moral thought. Normative judgments divide into two sub-kinds, the evaluative and the directive; but the sub-kinds are larger than is commonly appreciated. Evaluative judgments include the judgments that such and such is a good umbrella, that Alfred is a witty comedian, and that Bert answered Carol's question correctly, as well as the judgment that David is a good human being. Directive judgments include the judgment that a toaster should toast evenly, that Edward ought to get a haircut, and that Frances must move her rook, as well as the judgment that George ought to be kind to his little brother. Thomson describes how judgments of these two sub-kinds interconnect and what makes them true when they are true. Given the extensiveness of the two sub-kinds of normative judgment, our everyday thinking is rich in normativity, and moreover, there is no gap between normative and factual thought. The widespread suspicion of the normative is therefore in large measure due to nothing deeper than an excessively narrow conception of what counts as a normative judgment.
About the Author
Judith Jarvis Thomson is Professor of Philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the author of many works in ethics, theory of action, and metaphysics. Her earlier books include Goodness and Advice (2003), The Realm of Rights (1990), and Rights, Restitution, and Risk (1986).
Table of Contents
I Goodness 1
II Goodness Properties 19
III Expressivism 35
IV Betterness Relations 59
V Virtue/Kind Properties 69
VI Correctness Properties (Acts) 83
VII Correctness Properties (Mental States) 109
VIII Reasons-For (Mental States) 125
IX Reasons-For (Acts) 145
X On Some Views about "Ought": Relativism, Dilemmas, Means-Ends 165
XI On Some Views about "Ought": Belief, Outcomes, Epistemic Ought 187
XII Directives 207
Addendum 1 "Red" and "Good" 233
Addendum 2 Correctness 249
Addendum 3 Reasons 253
Addendum 4 Reasoning 257
Index of Names 271