This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Expressions of frustration, even within the ranks of normativists, about what Turner refers to as mystery-mongering are by no means rare. Indeed, the term “mysterionism” has been coined to characterise just such a position. Attacks on it, and other forms of normativism that refuse to carry the explanatory burden (e.g. various forms of “quietism”), are arguably growing in number, e.g. see McPherson 2010.
In this respect, Turner aptly reminds us of Kant being disciplined for “theological disputation under the guise of philosophy”, as when he argued on the basis of his philosophy against “certain religious doctrines of which he disapproved”: p. 143; see Hunter 2005 for details.
Turner refers to a forthcoming paper, not yet available, that further elaborates on his notion of “following the thought of another.”
Here, Turner cites and endorses a great paper by Paul Roth (2003), which criticises, inter alia, the idea that our judgement of mistakes is necessarily based on our application of pre-existing rules.
In fact, this raises the interesting question—which unfortunately I can only mention here—as to what exactly Turner means by empathy. For instance, Turner does not discuss the difference between empathy and sympathy. As Jesse Prinz points out, the difference is that in empathy we are obliged to share the feelings of who we observe/interpret/interact with; in sympathy, we sympathise with the feelings of the other without sharing them (as when a parent sympathises with a child who feels scared in the dark, but does not feel the fear themselves): see Prinz 2007, pp. 82–83. Is it empathy or sympathy, then, that Turner has in mind? Given what he says about making others intelligible on the basis of what we know about ourselves, it seems that it is sympathy—but then empathy is a badly chosen term.
Beiser, F. (2009). Normativity in Neo-Kantianism: Its rise and fall. International Journal of Philosophical Studies, 17(1), 9–27.
Bertea, S. (2009). The normative claim of the law. Oxford: Hart Publishing.
Boghossian, P. (1989). The rule-following considerations. Mind, 98(392), 507–549.
Brown, R. (1963). Explanation in social science. Chicago: Aldine Publishing Company.
De Caro, M., & MacArthur, D. (Eds.). (2004). Naturalism in question. Mass: Harvard University Press.
De Caro, M., & MacArthur, D. (Eds.). (2010). Naturalism and normativity. New York: Columbia University Press.
Delacroix, S. (2006). Legal norms and normativity. Oxford: Hart Publishing.
deVries, W. A. (Ed.). (2010). Empiricism, perceptual knowledge, normativity, and realism: Essays on Wilfrid Sellars. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Finlay, S. (2010). Recent work on normativity. Analysis, 70(2), 331–346.
Gallagher, S. (2008). Direct perception in the intersubjective context. Consciousness and Cognition, 17(2), 535–543.
Gilbert, M. (1990). Walking together: A paradigmatic social phenomenon. Midwest Studies in Philosophy, 15(1), 1–14.
Hart, H. L. A. (1961). The concept of law. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Hunter, I. (2005). Kant’s religion and prussian religious policy. Modern Intellectual History, 2(1), 1–27.
Korsgaard, C. (1996). The sources of normativity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Lacey, N. (2004). The nightmare and the noble dream: A life of H.L.A. Hart. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Marmor, A. (2009). Social conventions: From language to law. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
McPherson, T. (2010). Against quietist normative realism. Philosophical Studies (Online First, 11 March 2010).
Pareto, V. (1935). The mind and society. New York: Harcourt Brace.
Parfit, D. (2006). Normativity. In R. Shafer-Landau (Ed.), Oxford studies in metaethics (pp. 325–380). Oxford: Clarendon Press.
Parfit, D. (forthcoming). On what matters. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Prinz, J. (2007). The emotional construction of morals. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Railton, P. (1999). Normative force and normative freedom: Hume and Kant, but Not Hume Versus Kant. Ratio, 12, 320–353.
Raz, J. (1999). Explaining normativity: On rationality and the justification of reason. Ratio, 12, 354–379.
Robertson, S. (Ed.). (2009). Spheres of reason: New essays in the philosophy of normativity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Roth, P. (1987). Meaning and method in the social sciences: A case for methodological pluralism. New York: Cornell University Press.
Roth, P. (2003). Mistakes. Synthese, 136, 389–408.
Rouse, J. (2007). Social practices and normativity. Philosophy of the Social Sciences, 37(1), 46–56.
Shah, N. (2003). How truth governs belief. Philosophical Review, 112(4), 447–482.
Smith, M. (2006). The law as a social practice: Are shared activities at the foundation of law? Legal Theory, 12, 265–292.
Turner, S. P. (1994). The social theory of practices. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Turner, S. P. (2002). Brains/practices/relativism. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
Turner, S. P. (2003). What do we mean by “We”? Protosociology: An International Journal of Interdisciplinary Research, 18–19, 139–162.
Turner, S. P. (2007). Explaining normativity. Philosophy of the Social Sciences, 37(1), 57–73.
Turner, S. P. (2010). Explaining the normative. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Turner, S. P. (forthcoming). Following the thought of another: Normative or naturalisable? In S. Lanzoni, R. Brain (Eds.), Varieties of empathy in science, art, and culture.
Wedgewood, R. (2007). The nature of normativity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Winch, P. (1958). The idea of social science and its relation to philosophy. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
Winch, P. (1964). Understanding a primitive society. American Philosophical Quarterly, 1, 307–324.
About this article
Cite this article
Del Mar, M. Normativism, Anti-Normativism and Humanist Pragmatism. Hum Stud 33, 305–323 (2010). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10746-010-9155-8