David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Metaphilosophy 42 (4):353-359 (2011)
Abstract: This essay examines two interpretations of Kant's argument for the formula of humanity. Christine M. Korsgaard defends a constructivist reading of Kant's argument, maintaining that humans must view themselves as having absolute value because their power for rational choice confers value on their ends. Allen Wood, however, defends a realist interpretation of Kant's argument, maintaining that humans actually are absolutely valuable and that their choices do not confer value but rather reflect their understanding of how the objects of their choices fulfill their needs and wants and contribute to their flourishing. Though Korsgaard's reading is more consistent with Kant's prioritizing of the right over the good, this essay raises a metaethical question regarding her constructivist position, namely, “What is meant by her claim that rational choice ‘confers’ value on objects?” In developing this question, it presents a realist account of goodness that is taken from Peter Geach's “Good and Evil.”
|Keywords||Geach realism Korsgaard categorical imperative constructivism Wood|
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References found in this work BETA
Simone De Beauvoir (1952). The Second Sex. Vintage Books.
P. T. Geach (1956). Good and Evil. Analysis 17 (2):33 - 42.
Immanuel Kant (1996). Practical Philosophy. Cambridge University Press.
Christine M. Korsgaard (1996). Creating the Kingdom of Ends. Cambridge University Press.
Christine M. Korsgaard (1998). Motivation, Metaphysics, and the Value of the Self: A Reply to Ginsborg, Guyer, and Schneewind. Ethics 109 (1):49-66.
Citations of this work BETA
Adam Cureton (2013). A Contractualist Reading of Kant's Proof of the Formula of Humanity. Kantian Review 18 (3):363-386.
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