The Empirical Study of Folk Metaethics

In this paper, I review recent attempts by experimental philosophers and psychologists to study folk metaethics empirically and discuss some of the difficulties that researchers face when trying to construct the right kind of research materials and interpreting the results that they obtain. At first glance, the findings obtained so far do not look good for the thesis that people are everywhere moral realists about every moral issue. However, because of difficulties in interpreting these results, I argue that better research is needed to move the debate forward.