We start with normative reasons.
We start with motivating reasons.
There are perhaps two reasons for this.
So not all normative reasons are internal reasons.
With respect to moral rights, specifically moral reasons are among these reasons.
Public reason liberals often argue that reasons should be shared but say little about what it means to share reasons.
But the mystery may be normative rather motivational if we assume, following Kant, that moral reasons are categorical reasons.
When Dancy says that reasons are (putative) facts that agents take to favour their actions, he is talking about motivating reasons.
To be perfectly rational is to have one’s agency shaped by the reasons that bear on one’s agency in the way that those reasons dictate.
This may even provide a promising analytical hypothesis about what claims about reasons mean, or reductive hypothesis about what reasons are.
It is important to clarify that reasons internalism is a thesis about normative (or justifying) reasons, not about motivating (or explanatory) reasons.
But there are, in addition, “explanatory” reasons, reasons that explain an action without necessarily justifying it and without being the reasons that motivated the agent.
Why should one even care that moral reasons align with deontology if the important reasons, the all-things-considered reasons that actually govern decisions, align with consequentialism?
(Other, more local practices have to accommodate reasons that come from outside the practice; for instance, in chess, the object of the game is to win, but I may have personal reasons for not playing to win.)
In an influential early discussion of reasons for action, Donald Davidson (1963) observed that a common form of explanation of why an agent acted as she did involves citing the reasons she had to act that way.
A ‘reasons externalist’ is someone who rejects reasons internalism, maintaining that at least some reasons for action are not connected to motivation in the way reasons internalism claims.
If internal reasons could be simply derivative from external reasons, and external reasons could be independently explained, then Actual State reasons internalism will have very little traction on these grounds.
The particularist picture is one which takes moral reasons to operate in ways that are not noticeably different from the way in which other reasons function—more ordinary reasons for action, say, or reasons for belief rather than for action.
The focus will be on reasons for acting—what are commonly called “practical reasons”, leaving aside questions that are specific to other reasons, for instance, reasons for believing, wanting, feeling emotions, and having attitudes, such as hope or resentment.
Externalists often appeal to the parallels between practical reasons (reasons for action) and epistemic or theoretical reasons (or reasons for belief) to make their case against certain forms of internalism, particularly the Humean Theory of Reasons (Millgram 1996).
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