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Revisiting the Tropic of Value: Reply to Rabinowicz and Rønnow-Rasmussen

Jonas Olson
Philosophy and Phenomenological Research
Vol. 67, No. 2 (Sep., 2003), pp. 412-422
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20140610
Page Count: 11
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Revisiting the Tropic of Value: Reply to Rabinowicz and Rønnow-Rasmussen
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Abstract

In this paper, I defend the view that the values of concrete objects and persons are reducible to the final values of tropes. This reductive account has recently been discussed and rejected by Rabinowicz and Rønnow-Rasmussen (2003). I begin by explaining why the reduction is appealing in the first place. In my rejoinder to Rabinowicz and Rønnow-Rasmussen I defend trope-value reductionism against three challenges. I focus mainly on their central objection, that holds that the reduction is untenable since different evaluative attitudes have, ontologically speaking, different objects. I grant that this may well be so, but argue that the objection is based on an unwarranted, loose reading of the notion 'value for its own sake'. On the more reasonable strict reading, it is plausible to maintain that tropes are the sole ontological category that can properly be ascribed final value.

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