I—Kant's‘I’in‘I Ought To’and Freud's Superego


Authors
Béatrice Longuenesse
New York University
Abstract
There are striking structural similarities between Freud's ego and Kant's transcendental unity of apperception, which for Kant grounds our use of ‘I’ in ‘I think’. There are also striking similarities between Freud's superego and Kant's account of the mental structure that grounds our use of ‘I’ in the moral ‘I ought to’. The paper explores these similarities on three main points: the conflict of motivations internal to the mind, the relation between discursive and pre‐discursive representation of moral motivation, and the unconscious character of moral motivation. The suggestion is that Freud offers resources for a naturalized account of just those features of our moral motivation that, according to Kant, seem to make it least amenable to a naturalistic explanation. How much of a revision of Kant's analysis of moral justification is thereby entailed is beyond the purview of the paper.
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DOI 10.1111/supa.2012.86.issue-1
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References found in this work BETA

The Varieties of Reference.Louise M. Antony, Gareth Evans & John McDowell - 1987 - Philosophical Review 96 (2):275.
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