Kant on Autonomy and the Value of Persons

Kantian Review 18 (2):241-262 (2013)

Authors
Eric Wilson
Georgia State University
Abstract
This essay seeks to contribute to current debates about value in Kant's ethics. Its main objective is to dislodge the widely shared intuition that his view of autonomy requires constructivism or some other alternative to moral realism. I argue the following. Kant seems to think that the value of persons is due to their very nature, not to what anyone decides is the case (however rational or pure those decisions may be). He also seems to think that when we treat persons as ends in themselves we are responding appropriately to the fact that their very nature elevates them above all other concerns. Neither of these beliefs is incompatible with his view of autonomy. So it is a mistake to think that Kant's ethics requires constructivism or any other form of anti-realism
Keywords autonomy   constructivism   dignity   person
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DOI 10.1017/s1369415413000034
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References found in this work BETA

The View from Nowhere.Thomas Nagel - 1986 - Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale 92 (2):280-281.
Kantian Constructivism in Moral Theory.John Rawls - 1980 - Journal of Philosophy 77 (9):515-572.
The Practice of Moral Judgment.Paul Guyer - 1993 - Ethics 106 (2):404-423.
Self to Self.J. David Velleman - 1996 - Philosophical Review 105 (1):39 - 76.
Objective and Unconditioned Value.Rae Langton - 2007 - Philosophical Review 116 (2):157-185.

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Citations of this work BETA

Why Ought the Philosophy Curriculum in Universities in Africa Be Africanised?Edwin Etieyibo - 2016 - South African Journal of Philosophy 35 (4):404-417.
The Bloomsbury Companion to Kant.Dennis Schulting (ed.) - 2015 - Bloomsbury Academic.

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