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Placement Practice Job Talk—Rowan Mellor
Wednesday December 14, 2022, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Rowan Mellor is a current postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Philosophy on the Scarborough campus. Please join us for his in-person practice placement job talk.
Skepticism about the No-Difference Challenge
It seems possible for many actions to cause harm collectively, without any single action making a difference to the harm in question. This raises a puzzle. It is tempting for an individual to argue as follows: ‘Since my action makes no difference, I have no reason not to do it’. It seems as though this argument must go wrong somewhere. But where? The challenge of answering this question is what I call the ‘no-difference challenge’. This talk defends a skeptical approach, according to which there is no answer to the no-difference challenge: that is, there is nothing wrong with thinking ‘my action makes no difference, so I have no reason not to do it’. This approach has been largely dismissed. I will argue, however, that it warrants serious consideration.