Alex Gregory


In this paper I first argue against one attractive formulation of the motivation argument, and against one attractive formulation of noncognitivism. I do so by example: I suggest that other-regarding normative judgments do not seem to have motivational powers and do not seem to be desires. After defending these two claims, I argue that other views can accommodate the motivational role of normative judgment without facing this objection. For example, desire-as-belief theories do so, since such theories only say that some normative judgments constitute desires, not that all such judgments do so. (I also briefly present similar reasoning in favor of the claim that desire-as-belief is superior to noncognitivism with respect to the Frege-Geach objection.) In short, I argue that, if we are seeking a theory that explains the motivational role of normative judgement, some theories are better than others insofar as they do so without committing to the claim that all normative judgements play such a motivational role.