Vol. 39 No. 2 (2019): The Prismatic Shape of Trust 2. Authors and Problems

Directions of Fit. Hegel’s Critique of Ethical Non-Cognitivism in the Logic

Armando Manchisi
Università di Padova

Published 2019-12-17


  • Hegel,
  • Science of logic,
  • Ethical non-cognitivism,
  • Metaethics,
  • Practical normativity

How to Cite

Manchisi, A. (2019). Directions of Fit. Hegel’s Critique of Ethical Non-Cognitivism in the Logic. Teoria. Rivista Di Filosofia, 39(2), 259–271. https://doi.org/10.4454/teoria.v39i2.81


One of the strongest arguments that ethical non-cognitivism uses in its own defense is that according to which knowledge and will structure themselves as different “directions of fit”: while knowledge, in order to be correct, implies that the mind has to fit the world, the will, in order to be effective, requires that the world has to fit the mind. Non-cognitivists thus believe that moral judgments are expression of will alone, and not of knowledge, and cannot therefore be considered true or justifiable. At the end of the Science of Logic, in the pages devoted to the idea of the true and the idea of the good, Hegel analyzes in details this kind of argument and shows its groundlessness: for Hegel it is not possible to separate will from knowledge without falling into complex aporias. Aim of the contribution is to shed light on those pages, still little studied today, and thus outline a possible alternative to the non-cognitivist ethical model.