Pretending Peace: Provisional political trust and sincerity in Kant and Améry

In Sorin Baiasu & Sylvie Loriaux (eds.), Sincerity in Politics and International Relations. London: Routledge. pp. 156-72 (2017)
Authors
Marguerite La Caze
University of Queensland
Abstract
Kant suggests in The Metaphysics of Morals that we may sometimes say something untrue or insincere since others are free to interpret our statements as they wish. (1996, 6:238) Yet he also argues that even in conflict situations we should be truthful so as to not eliminate trust and to make it possible for a rightful condition to arise. My paper considers the conditions Kant believes essential to maintain basic trust so that in better times peace is possible. It also considers their relation to sincerity. I argue that Kant’s view can provide a model for building political trust after wars and other forms of conflict. Furthermore, I consider the need for the possibility of help as also necessary for trust, through the work of Jean Améry. In certain situations, sincerity is not the most important thing. More important are truthfulness and the willingness to act as if we were sincere and thought others and the world worthy of our trust.
Keywords Immanuel Kant  Jean Amery  political trust  sincerity
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