“There is none righteous”: Kant on the hang zum bösen and the universal evil of humanity

Southern Journal of Philosophy 49 (2):137-163 (2011)

Authors
Samuel Duncan
Tidewater Community College
Abstract
This paper offers a new interpretation of the propensity to evil and its relation to Kant's claim that the human race is universally evil. Unlike most of its competitors, the interpretation presented here neither trivializes Kant's claims about the universal evil of humanity nor attributes a position to him that is incompatible with his repeated insistence that we are blameworthy for actions only when we could have acted differently. This interpretation also accounts for a number of otherwise bewildering claims in the Religion and makes sense of the analogy Kant draws between the propensity to evil and addiction
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DOI 10.1111/j.2041-6962.2011.00050.x
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