Do hypothetical imperatives require categorical imperatives?

European Journal of Philosophy 18 (1):84-107 (2010)
Abstract
Abstract: Recently, the idea that every hypothetical imperative must somehow be 'backed up' by a prior categorical imperative has gained a certain influence among Kant interpreters and ethicists influenced by Kant. Since instrumentalism is the position that holds that hypothetical imperatives can by themselves and without the aid of categorical imperatives explain all valid forms of practical reasoning, the influential idea amounts to a rejection of instrumentalism as internally incoherent. This paper argues against this prevailing view both as an interpretation of Kant and as philosophical understanding of practical reason. In particular, it will be argued that many of the arguments that claim to show that hypothetical imperatives must be backed up by categorical imperatives mistakenly assume that the form of practical reasoning must itself occur as a premise within the reasoning. An alternative to this assumption will be offered. I will conclude that while instrumentalism may well be false, there is no reason to believe it is incoherent.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/j.1468-0378.2008.00331.x
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 31,812
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Creating the Kingdom of Ends.Christine M. Korsgaard - 1996 - Cambridge University Press.
Why Be Rational?Niko Kolodny - 2005 - Mind 114 (455):509-563.
Kant's Ethical Thought.Allen W. Wood - 1999 - Cambridge University Press.
Normative Requirements.John Broome - 1999 - Ratio 12 (4):398–419.

View all 33 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
What Carroll's Tortoise Actually Proves.Jan Willem Wieland - 2013 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 16 (5):983-997.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Hypothetical Imperatives: Scope and Jurisdiction.Mark Schroeder - forthcoming - In Robert Johnson & Mark Timmons (eds.), (unknown). Oxford University Press.
Kant's Distinction Between Categorical and Hypothetical Imperatives.Reginald Jackson - 1942 - Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 43:131 - 166.
Are Methodological Rules Hypothetical Imperatives?David B. Resnik - 1992 - Philosophy of Science 59 (3):498-507.
Practical Reason and 'Companions in Guilt'.James Harold - 2003 - Philosophical Investigations 26 (4):311–331.
Allison on Rational Agency.Stephen Engstrom - 1993 - Inquiry : An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 36 (4):405 – 418.
Added to PP index
2009-01-28

Total downloads
155 ( #34,992 of 2,231,554 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
6 ( #98,722 of 2,231,554 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature