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Instrumental Normativity: In Defense of the Transmission Principle

Benjamin Kiesewetter
Ethics
Vol. 125, No. 4 (July 2015), pp. 921-946
DOI: 10.1086/680911
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/680911
Page Count: 26
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Instrumental Normativity: In Defense of the Transmission Principle
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Abstract

If you ought to perform a certain act, and some other action is a necessary means for you to perform that act, then you ought to perform that other action as well—or so it seems plausible to say. This transmission principle is of both practical and theoretical significance. The aim of this essay is to defend this principle against a number of recent objections, which (as I show) are all based on core assumptions of the view called actualism. I reject actualism, provide an alternative explanation of its plausible features, and present an independent argument for the transmission principle.

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