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Ends and Principles in Kant's Moral Thought : Nijhoff International Philosophy Series : Vol 22 - John E. Atwell

Ends and Principles in Kant's Moral Thought

Nijhoff International Philosophy Series : Vol 22

Hardcover Published: 31st October 1986
ISBN: 9789024731671
Number Of Pages: 227

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Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) stands among the greatest thinkers of the Western world. There is hardly an area of thought, at least of philosophical thought, to which he did not make significant and lasting contributions. Particularly noteworthy are his writings on the foundations and limits of human knowledge, the bidimensional nature of perceptual or "natural" objects (including human beings), the basic principles and ends of morality, the character of a just society and of a world at peace, the movement and direction of human history, the nature of beauty, the end or purpose of all creation, the proper education of young people, the true conception of religion, and on and on. Though Kant was a life-long resident of Konigsberg, Prussia - child, student, tutor, and then professor of philosophy (and other subjects) - his thought ranged over nearly all the world and even beyond. Reports reveal that he (a bachelor) was an amiable man, highly respected by his students and colleagues, and even loved by his several close friends. He was apparently a man of integrity, both in his personal relations and in his pursuit of knowledge and truth. Despite his somewhat pessimistic attitude toward the moral progress of mankind - judging from past history and contemporary events - he never wavered from a deep-seated faith in the goodness of the human heart, in man's "splendid disposition toward the good.

'... Atwell does deal with familiar topics inmuch of his work, but does so in a way that is fresh and penetrating as well as remarkably clear. ... in every chapter topics are treated in a way which admirably combines careful scholarship with a sense of what is philosophically important. ... As a work of a scholarship it seems to me to compare favourably with the best books on the subject, including those by Marcus Singer and Onora Nell.' Prof. W.H. Walsh+, Oxford, UK

I: Introduction: Background and the central problem.- 1. Human knowledge and the knowable world.- 2. Freedom: The chief condition of morality.- 3. Types of moral theories.- 4. Ends and principles: Inconsistencies?.- II: Ends and the good will.- 1. Conditioned goods and the unconditioned good.- 2. Prima facie goods and the absolute good.- 3. The uniqueness of a good will.- 4. The irrelvance of ends.- 5. A note on respect for the moral law.- III: Maxims.- 1. Three kinds of maxims: Incentival, actional, and dispositional.- 2. Alternative accounts of Kantian Maxims.- 3. Preliminary elucidation of actional maxims.- 4. What maxims (and the adoption of maxims) are not.- 5. On formulating maxims.- IV: Universality and the categorical imperative.- 1. The general nature of imperatives.- 2. The principle of universality of nature.- 3. Suicide and lying promises.- 4. Neglect of talents and refusal to help others.- V: Ends and moral obligation.- 1. The problem of objecitve ends.- 2. Man as the objective end-in-itself.- 3. The alleged inconsistency.- 4. End which are duties.- 5. The highest good.- VI: The principle of humanity.- 1. Initial remarks.- 2. Treatment of others as means.- 3. Humanity in others as a positive end in itself: The duty of love for others.- 4. Respect for humanity in one's own person: Duties to oneself.- VII: Autonomy of the Will.- 1. The principle of autonomy of the will as a moral criterion.- 2. Autonomy and the possibility of morals.- 3. The kingdom of ends.- 4. Responsibility for wrong acts and accountability for moral evil.- VIII: Duties, rights, and ends in the political order.- 1. The alleged right to revolt.- 2. Kant's paradoxical stand on revolution.- 3. The alleged right to lie from benevolence.- 4. The end of nature in human history.- IX: Happiness and law-morality.- 1. Morality and happiness.- 2. Law-morality and atheism.- 3. Conclusion.

ISBN: 9789024731671
ISBN-10: 9024731674
Series: Nijhoff International Philosophy Series : Vol 22
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 227
Published: 31st October 1986
Publisher: Springer
Country of Publication: NL
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.88  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.5