Kantian Review 7:102-133 (2003)

James Mahon
Lehman College (CUNY)
Like several prominent moral philosophers before him, such as St Augustine and St Thomas Aquinas, Kant held that it is never morally permissible to tell a lie. Although a great deal has been written on why and how he argued for this conclusion, comparatively little has been written on what, precisely, Kant considered a lie to be, and on how he differentiated between being truthful and being candid, between telling a lie and being reticent, and between telling a lie and other forms of linguistic deception. That is to say, very little has been written on the scope of Kant's prohibition against lying. In this article I will argue that the scope of the prohibition against lying is narrower than it is commonly supposed to be
Keywords Kant  Lies  Reticence  Candor  Deception
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1017/S1369415400001758
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 50,100
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Kant: A Biography.Michelle Grier - 2004 - Mind 113 (450):365-368.
The Faintest Passion.Harry Frankfurt - 1992 - Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association 66 (3):5-16.
The Right to Lie: Kant on Dealing with Evil.Christine M. Korsgaard - 1986 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 15 (4):325-349.

View all 37 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Lying, Deceiving, and Misleading.Andreas Stokke - 2013 - Philosophy Compass 8 (4):348-359.
Norms of Truthfulness and Non-Deception in Kantian Ethics.Donald Wilson - 2015 - In Pablo Muchnik Oliver Thorndike (ed.), Rethinking Kant Volume 4. Cambridge Scholars Press. pp. 111-134.

View all 9 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
149 ( #58,018 of 2,324,545 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #309,669 of 2,324,545 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes