Emotivism is a theory concerning the meaning of moral judgments. It holds that moral judgments are expressions of emotion or are designed to evoke specific emotions in others. It is a noncognitive theory since it denies that moral judgments have any factual content, thus lacking truth value. The best-known defenders of emotivism are A. J. Ayer and C. L. Stevenson.

Reaction Against G. E. Moore

In the early 20th century, British moral philosophy began to focus on metaethics, the branch of ethics that attempts to determine the meaning of ethical terms, and emotivism must be seen in this context. It has its roots in a reaction against some of the views of G. E. Moore as expressed in his influential work Principia Ethica. These views were ...

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