Moral Virtue and the Epistemology of Disagreement


The paper is a defense of the thesis that there are situations in which morally virtuous persons who are epistemic peers may disagree about what to do without either person being rationally required to change his or her judgment (a version of the Steadfast position in the epistemology of disagreement debate). The argument is based in part on similarities between decisions of virtuous agents and other practical decisions such as a baseball manager’s decision to change pitchers during a game. In both cases, the role and responsibilities of the person making the decision and the complexities of the decision favor the Steadfast position. At the end of the paper, the argument for this position is compared with discussions of traditional arguments against moral objectivity that are based on moral disagreements, and it is suggested that they involve rather different considerations.