Kantian Derivations

Canadian Journal of Philosophy 13 (3):409 - 431 (1983)
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Although Kant's attempts in the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals to derive statements of specific duties from the categorical imperative have received much attention, there is still disagreement over the strategies of particular derivations, the status of the auxiliary assumptions employed therein, and the principles at work in the derivations generally. Yet an understanding of these matters is indispensable for a proper understanding of the Groundwork and bears on a much wider class of ethical theories as well. My aim here is to provide an account of the derivations and their auxiliary premises that explains both the strategy behind the derivations generally and the details of Kant's specific examples. In particular, I shall argue that the widespread view that the premises of the derivations are empirical is mistaken and that their conclusions are thus more general than is often supposed.



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Chris Swoyer
University of Oklahoma

Citations of this work

The Bloomsbury Companion to Kant.Dennis Schulting (ed.) - 2015 - London: Bloomsbury Academic.

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References found in this work

The Hypothetical Imperative.Thomas E. Hill - 1973 - Philosophical Review 82 (4):429-450.
How to apply the categorical imperative.Nelson Potter - 1975 - Philosophia 5 (4):395-416.
Categorical imperatives and moral principles.Allen Buchanan - 1977 - Philosophical Studies 31 (4):249 - 260.
The Paradoxes of Kant's Ethics.A. C. Ewing - 1938 - Philosophy 13 (49):40 - 56.

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