‘Kant’s [Moral] Constructivism and Rational Justification’

In Pihlström & Williams Baiasu (ed.), Politics and Metaphysics in Kant. Wales University Press (2011)
Abstract
This paper characterises concisely a key issue about rational justification which highlights an important achievement of Kant’s constructivist method for identifying and justifying basic norms: uniquely, it resolves the Pyrrhonian Dilemma of the Criterion. Kant’s constructivist method is both sound and significant because it is based on core principles of rational justification as such. Explicating this basis of Kant’s constructivism affords an illuminating and defensible explication of four key aspects of the autonomy of rational judgment, including our positive moral freedom; it shows how Kant’s constructivism is fundamentally social and it shows how Kant’s constructivism can readily accommodate historical factors which bear on the appropriateness and legitimacy of social and political institutions. All of these advantages are available without recourse to Kant’s transcendental idealism, and all of them respond to common complaints about or alleged objections to Kant’s practical philosophy.
Keywords moral constructivism  Dilemma of the Criterion  rational justification
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