Kant: Moral Progress, Politics, and the Highest Good

Dissertation, Tulane University (1997)
Abstract
This dissertation is a critical examination of Kant's use of the notion of "moral progress" throughout all of his writings. The dissertation is divided into two sections. The first looks at Kant's analysis of history and teleology. I argue, against many commentators, that Kant is already aware of the limitations of the concept of teleology with the writing of the first Critique, and thus his important notion of moral progress does not go beyond the bounds set by the first Critique, nor is it merely a misconstrued notion of teleology which is eliminated with the third Critique. ;In the first section I make three main points. First, I argue that Kant gives us two locations for the highest good: in an afterlife and on earth. I argue that we ought to take this division and its implications seriously. Second, I argue that Kant uses the notion of moral progress as a postulate of pure practical reason, necessary for the defense of a highest good on earth. Third, I show that there is a strong connection between moral progress and politics, arguing that political institutions are a necessary but not sufficient condition for moral progress. ;The second section is constructive, attempting to show exactly how this notion of moral progress operates in Kant's philosophy. In the first half, I present an intensive analysis of Kant's concept of the highest good, several problems with its conceivability, and its link between morality and politics. Next, I outline what I take to be the five steps involved in moral progress. In the last chapters I argue that the notion of moral progress is indeed a necessary postulate of practical reason given the rest of Kant's philosophical system. I conclude by showing how my interpretation strengthens Kant's position and gives new insight to his understanding of political theory
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
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: 33,142
External links

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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Kant, History, and the Idea of Moral Development.Pauline Kleingeld - 1999 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 16 (1):59-80.
Autonomy and the Highest Good.Lara Denis - 2005 - Kantian Review 10 (1):33-59.
Community and Progress in Kant's Moral Philosophy.Kate A. Moran - 2012 - Catholic University of America Press.
Kant on God, Immortality, and the Highest Good.A. T. Nuyen - 1994 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 32 (1):121-133.
Kant's Conception of the Highest Good.Matthew David Caswell - 2003 - Dissertation, Boston University
The Concept of the Highest Good in Kant's Moral Theory.Stephen Engstrom - 1992 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 52 (4):747-780.
Two Conceptions of the Highest Good in Kant.Andrews Reath - 1988 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 26 (4):593-619.
An Examination of Kant's Duties of Right and Their Moral Basis.Joyce Lazier Baldwin - 2004 - Dissertation, The University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Analytics

Added to PP index
2015-02-05

Total downloads
0

Recent downloads (6 months)
0

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.

My notes

Sign in to use this feature