The phenomenological failure of groundwork III

Inquiry 52 (4):335 – 356 (2009)
Henry Allison and Paul Guyer have recently offered interpretations of Kant's argument in Groundwork III. These interpretations share this premise: the argument moves from a non-moral, theoretical premise to a moral conclusion, and the failure of the argument is a failure to make this jump from the non-moral to the moral. This characterization both of the nature of the argument and its failure is flawed. Consider instead the possibility that in Groundwork III, Kant is struggling toward something rather different from this, not trying to pull the moral rabbit out of the theoretical hat, but instead seeking a proto-phenomenological grounding of morality: a grounding that begins from first personal felt experiences that already possess moral content, and proceeds to its further practical claims via attentive reflection on these felt experiences. This paper brings this assumption to our reading of Groundwork III, showing that in doing so we acquire a deeper appreciation both of the argument, and the reasons it fails. Kant's argument is practical throughout. And the failure of the argument is the failure of Kant's nascent efforts to provide a new, phenomenological method for the grounding of practical philosophy.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1080/00201740903087318
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 23,316
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

30 ( #158,797 of 1,932,585 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

5 ( #197,689 of 1,932,585 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.