Kant on Happiness

Philosophy Research Archives 13:79-90 (1987)
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Abstract

This paper explores Kant’s definition of happiness as it appears in the Groundwork and the Critique of Practical Reason. Three accounts of happiness are considered: contentment, the satisfaction of all one’s inclinations, and, the satisfaction of a system of inclinations. The paper discusses the extent to which there is textual evidence for each of these accounts and considers the arguments of Watson, Paton, Gregor, and Beck in support of these various accounts. It concludes by arguing that the first account of happiness is the weakest and that the third account is the strongest.

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Victoria S. Wike
Loyola University, Chicago

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