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n. (used with a sing. verb)
The study of the meaning and nature of ethical terms, judgments, and arguments.

met′a·eth′i·cal adj.


(ˌmɛt əˈɛθ ɪks, ˈmɛt əˌɛθ-)

n. (usu. with a sing. v.)
the branch of ethics dealing with the meaning of ethical terms, the nature of moral discourse, and the foundations of morality.


a branch of philosophy concerned with the foundations of ethics and especially with the definition of ethical terms and the nature of moral discourse.
See also: Ethics, Philosophy
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References in periodicals archive ?
CONSTITUTIVISTS ABOUT NORMS in metaethics explain the normative
Rasmussen's fourth co-authored book, The Perfectionist Turn: From Metanorms to Metaethics.
KEYWORDS: Menger, Keynes, Brentano, fitting attitude theory, ethics, metaethics
He also provides an additional informative "box" in which he makes clear that a key learning outcome for this chapter is for the student to understand Hume's definition, explanation, and utilization of his ideas related to metaethics.
The essays treat the following topics: Nietzsche's views on or relationship to aesthetics (essays 1-3), metaethics, (specifically, non-cognitivism and fictionalism) (essays 4-5), compassion and the self (essays 6-8), and naturalism (essay 9).
15) Philosophical ethical theory distinguishes three levels of ethical discourse, namely, moral judgments, normative ethics, and metaethics.
The late Mary Daly's controversial 1978 book Gyn/Ecology: The Metaethics of Radical Feminism included an entire chapter on the witch hunts, represented as the epitome of what Daly called the "Androcratic State of Atrocity.
They consider the advisability of analyzing philosophy from a naturalistic perspective; the senses in which there can be a naturalistic account of the mind; how naturalism can be extended to moral behavior and agency; applications to moral psychology, metaethics, and normative ethics; how naturalist realism relies on fallible, scientific justification; metaphysics; the philosophical method; and other topics.
Besides, cogitating on the moralistic principles of Koran and its associated ethical theories along with drawing on ontology, particularly Koranic anthropology, may help delineate the philosophical foundations of ethics and develop metaethics based on holy Koran.
The questions of metaethics are valid, but they are not our questions.
familiar debates in the metaethics of normative predicates that have