This article considers the question ‘What makes hope rational?’ We take Adrienne Martin’s recent incorporation analysis of hope as representative of a tradition that views the rationality of hope as a matter of instrumental reasons. Against this tradition, we argue that an important subset of hope, ‘fundamental hope’, is not governed by instrumental rationality. Rather, people have reason to endorse or reject such hope in virtue of the contribution of the relevant attitudes to the integrity of their practical identity, which (...) makes the relevant hope not instrumentally but intrinsically valuable. This argument also allows for a new analysis of the reasons people have to abandon hope and for a better understanding of non-fundamental, ‘prosaic’ hopes. (shrink)
It has been argued that Kants actions. However, it would be uncompromising to allow for only two possibilities: either full responsibility or none. Moreover, in the Metaphysics of Morals Kant himself claims that there can be degrees of responsibility, depending on the magnitude of the obstacles that have to be overcome when acting. I will show that this claim is consistent with Kant’s theory as a whole and thereby make transparent how degrees of responsibility are possible for Kant. The solution (...) is based on the distinction between two senses of responsibility: taking oneself to be an accountable person is an all-or-nothing affair, whereas praise- or blameworthiness for a particular action can still be a matter of degree. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to suggest that a necessary condition of autonomy has not been sufficiently recognized in the literature: the capacity to critically reflect on one’s practical attitudes (desires, preferences, values, etc.) in the light of new experiences . It will be argued that most prominent accounts of autonomy—ahistorical as well as history-sensitive—have either altogether failed to recognize this condition or at least failed to give an explicit account of it.
Defeasibility, most generally speaking, means that given some set of conditions A, something else B will hold, unless or until defeating conditions C apply. While the term was introduced into philosophy by legal philosopher H.L.A. Hart in 1949, today, the concept of defeasibility is employed in many different areas of philosophy. This volume for the first time brings together contributions on defeasibility from epistemology , legal philosophy and ethics and the philosophy of action . The volume ends with an extensive (...) bibliography. (shrink)
This article proposes a Kantian account of our reasons to forgive that situates our moral fallibility as their ultimate ground. I explore similarities and differences between Kant’s account in the Doctrine of Virtue and the more recent account offered by Garrard and McNaughton, 39–60, 2003). After tracing the connection between moral fallibility and moral luck, I discuss Kant’s argument for a duty to be forgiving. Kant’s strategy yields a plausible account of the normative status of forgiveness: Although we generally have (...) a moral reason to forgive others, forgiveness is not required in every case of wrongdoing. Kant’s argument is based on the assumption that we are all in need of forgiveness, the nature of which I go on to explain. Forgiveness has the power to relieve us of a burden that results from moral failure, which grounds both its standing as a duty and its importance in the lives of fallible moral agents. (shrink)
The contributions in this volume, written by leading scholars in the philosophy of hope, gives a systematic overview over the philosophical history of hope, about contemporary debates and about the role of hope in our collective life.