Analyse & Kritik

Journal of Philosophy and Social Theory


"Åsa Burman"

Titel: Two Types of Social Norms
Autor: Åsa Burman
Seite: 25-36

In Morality and Socially Constructed Norms, Laura Valentini poses and answers this overall question: When and why, if at all, are socially constructed norms morally binding? Valentini develops an original account, the agency-respect view, that offers an answer to this general question by offering a moral criterion in terms of agency respect. I agree with the criterion proposed by the agency-respect view, given the account of socially constructed norms that it assumes. However, its account of socially constructed norms seems too narrow to answer the general question. More specifically, I argue that the account of social norms is too narrow, even according to Valentini’s own standard, since it does not account for teleological social norms, which are about standards of excellence rather than standards of behavior. Taking teleological social norms into account calls the moral criterion proposed by the agency-respect view into question: it is plausible concerning the type of social norm assumed by the agency-respect view, but not for teleological social norms. Hence, the general question has not been fully answered.

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