David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal of Value Inquiry 44 (2):199-207 (2010)
According to Christine Korsgaard, Kantian hypothetical and categorical imperative principles are constitutive principles of agency. By acting in a way that is guided by these imperatives, an individual makes herself into an agent. There is hence, on her theory, an inextricable link between the nature of agency and the practical issue of why we should be rational and moral. The benefits of such an account would be great: in Korsgaard’s view, an account that bases morality on the nature of agency is the basis for a refutation of any kind of moral skepticism, providing an indubitable and objective foundation for morality. This may seem too good to be true, and it is. Korsgaard could only succeed at offering a foundation for morality at a great cost. The cost is that Korsgaard gives too restrictive an account of agency. Korsgaard does not present a coherent account of irrational or immoral agency, and the inability to offer an account of such agency implies an inability to offer a proper account of responsibility. Korsgaard’s view shares a fundamental flaw with Immanuel Kant’s account of morality in the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals: Korsgaard cannot give a full, adequate account of individual responsibility. In light of the failure of Kant’s and Korsgaard’s accounts, Kantians need to provide a better, more comprehensive characterization of agency. Presenting a proper account of agency will require a rejection of a central tenet of traditional Kantian metaethics, but the rejection of this central tenet does not require a full rejection of Kantianism.
|Keywords||Christine Korsgaard Immanuel Kant Agency Freedom of the Will Responsibility|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
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.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Edward Pols (1982). The Acts of Our Being: A Reflection on Agency and Responsibility. University of Massachusetts Press.
A. Strand (2013). Group Agency, Responsibility, and Control. Philosophy of the Social Sciences 43 (2):201-224.
Arthur Ripstein (2004). Justice and Responsibility. Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence 17 (2):361-386.
Manuel Vargas (2006). On the Importance of History for Responsible Agency. Philosophical Studies 127 (3):351-382.
Stephen Wilmot (2001). Corporate Moral Responsibility: What Can We Infer From Our Understanding of Organisations? [REVIEW] Journal of Business Ethics 30 (2):161 - 169.
Robert H. Kane (2004). Agency, Responsibility, and Indeterminism: Reflections on Libertarian Theories of Free Will. In Ted Honderich (ed.), Freedom and Determinism. Bradford Book/MIT Press
Bernd Carsten Stahl (2006). Responsible Computers? A Case for Ascribing Quasi-Responsibility to Computers Independent of Personhood or Agency. Ethics and Information Technology 8 (4):205-213.
Shaun Nichols (2006). Folk Intuitions on Free Will. Journal of Cognition and Culture 6:57-86.
Garrath Williams (2008). Responsibility as a Virtue. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 11 (4):455 - 470.
Pascal Engel (2009). Epistemic Responsibility Without Epistemic Agency. Philosophical Explorations 12 (2):205 – 219.
Added to index2010-02-27
Total downloads119 ( #18,468 of 1,725,161 )
Recent downloads (6 months)60 ( #18,673 of 1,725,161 )
How can I increase my downloads?