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1) “On the other hand, it is possible that he conserves the notion of an objective reality as legitimate, but denies that science, or any other conception of the world, can describe such a reality.”
I’m not sure about the “possible that he conserves”.

2) “In my view, Bett’s claim that contemporary ethical skepticism is not essentially local seems to rely upon an invalid inference from the fact that, to be skeptical about morality, one does not have to be non-skeptical about every other area to the affirmation that, to be skeptical about morality, one does not have to be non-skeptical not even about some other area.”
Are the punctuations correct?

3) “I think that someone can deny the existence of objective moral values with no need to be skeptical only about morality or non-skeptical about science; what I do not believe is that this denial does not presuppose as a necessary condition confidence in the objectivity of some conception of the world.”
Is “some” right or should I use “any”?

4) "This point will be important for determining in the final section whether it is possible to characterize this type of skepticism as non-local."
Is "important for" correct?

Thanks,

Sextus
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Comments  
Hello Sextus

1) Perhaps 'retains' rather than 'conserves'.

2) Perhaps insert 'applying' after 'rely upon'; and change 'not even' to 'even'. But I find the negatives and positives difficult in this sentence, and so may have misunderstood.

3) I'm not sure I understand this sentence. Does it mean: 'You can deny the existence of objective moral values without having to be skeptical only about morality or non-skeptical about science; but this denial necessarily presupposes confidence in the objectivity of some conception of the world'?

4) Perhaps 'this point is an important factor in determining...'

See you
MrP
Hello MrP. Thanks for your suggestions. I’ll make a couple of remarks about the following sentence, which you found confusing:

“In my view, Bett’s claim that contemporary ethical skepticism is not essentially local seems to be based upon an invalid inference from the fact that, to be skeptical about morality, one does not have to be non-skeptical about every other area to the affirmation that, to be skeptical about morality, one does not have to be non-skeptical not even about some other area.”

1) What I mean here is that there is an invalid inference from A to B. The premise, A, is “the fact that to be skeptical about morality, one does not have to be non-skeptical about every other area”, while the conclusion, B, is the “the affirmation that, to be skeptical about morality, one does not have to be non-skeptical not even about some other area”.

2) Now, regarding the “not even”, maybe I’m saying it as I would say it in Spanish. It’s something like this: “there is no reason for being (one does not have to be) impolite (non-polite) not even to Bush”. I don’t know if this is clear; perhaps in English you would delete the “not” before “even”.

Sextus
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Hello Sextus

I'm still having a little trouble understanding! Is this a fair paraphrase?

'Although it is true that, to be skeptical about morality, one need not be non-skeptical about every other area, it does not therefore follow that, to be skeptical about morality, one need not be non-skeptical even about some other area. Yet this is the basis for Bett's claim that contemporary ethical skepticism is not essentially local.'

Sorry to be obtuse.

MrP
Thanks for your suggestions Pedanticus. Maybe I could say something like this:

“In my view, Bett’s claim that contemporary ethical skepticism is essentially local seems to be based upon an invalid inference. For from the fact that, to be skeptical about morality, one need not be non-skeptical about every other area, Bett infers that, to be skeptical about morality, one need not be non-skeptical even about some other area”.

However, I'm still puzzled by the "even" / "not even" difference. I still feel that I should use the latter.

Sextus
Ah! Now I follow.

I wonder if the contrast between 'every other area' and 'even about some other area' needs bringing out. For instance, I don't know if (for the latter - 'even about...') this would be an equivalent:

'...one need not be non-sceptical about any area'.

i.e. the contrast is between 'scepticism everywhere isn't necessary' and 'scepticism anywhere isn't necessary'.

MrP
PS:
You could probably use 'not even' in colloquial speech as an intensifier, or perhaps if you sectioned it off as a refining restatement:

'He never gets to work on time – not even on Mondays' (2 negatives) =

'Even on Mondays, he doesn't get to work on time.' (1 negative)

But in your text as it stands, it would have an odd effect.
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Hi MrP

I think the contrast between "every other area" and " (not) even about some other area" is necessary because I'm talking about the areas other than morality. So one goes from "one need not be non-skeptical about every area other than morality" to "one need not be non-skeptical (not) even about some area other than morality".

I think that the first example in you PS gets the point of my sentence. But, as you said, you would find it odd.

Sextus
Hello Sextus

I still find the 'areas' distinction difficult. Out of (philosophical) interest, how does it work in terms of examples?

(It troubles me that I don't understand...)

MrP
Suppose that there are only three alleged areas or fields or spheres, or whatever term you might prefer, that refer to different kinds of entities that supposedly exist in the world: the natural sciences, morality (or morals?) and common sense. Now, the "every other area" would refer to the natural sciences and common sense. The "some other area" would refer to one of them. So, even if, to be sceptical about morality, one needs not be unsceptical about the natural sciences AND common sense, one does need to be unsceptical about EITHER the natural sciences OR common sense. I should expound the argument that underlies it, but this is the idea of the paragraph.

Regarding the bloody "not even", I found in google: "Don't vote, not even for Martha". I think this one is similar to an example you gave. I still find that when I take the "not" out, the real meaning of the sentence is lost.

Sextus
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