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    From Biological Functions to Natural Goodness
    Philosophers' Imprint 19. 2019.
    Neo-Aristotelian ethical naturalism aims to place moral virtue in the natural world by showing that moral goodness is an instance of natural goodness—a kind of goodness supposedly also found in the biological realm of plants and non-human animals. One of the central issues facing neo-Aristotelian naturalists concerns their commitment to a kind of function ascription based on the concept of the flourishing of an organism that seems to have no place in modern biology. In this paper, I offer a nove…Read more
  •  44
    Neo-Aristotelian metaethical naturalism is a modern attempt at naturalizing ethics using ideas from Aristotle’s teleological metaphysics. Proponents of this view argue that moral virtue in human beings is an instance of natural goodness, a kind of goodness supposedly also found in the realm of non-human living things. Many critics question whether neo-Aristotelian naturalism is tenable in light of modern evolutionary biology. Two influential lines of objection have appealed to an evolutionary un…Read more
  • Neo-Aristotelian metaethical naturalism aims to naturalize ethical normativity by showing that it is continuous with natural normativity, a kind of normativity already present in nature among plants and animals. Opponents of this view argue that evolutionary biology rejects the neo-Aristotelian notion of natural normativity, while its proponents argue that the opponents’ appeal to evolutionary biology is misguided and misses the point of the metaethical project. In this paper, I first argue that…Read more
  • According to neo-Aristotelian ethical naturalism, moral goodness is an instance of natural goodness, a kind of normativity supposedly already present in nature in the biological realm of non-human living things. Proponents of this view appeal to Michael Thompson’s conception of a life-form--the form of a living organism--to give an account of natural goodness. However, although neo-Aristotelians call themselves naturalists, they hardly ever consult the science of biology to defend their commitme…Read more