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Lara Denis
Agnes Scott College
  1. Freedom, Primacy, and Perfect Duties to Oneself.Lara Denis - 2010 - In Kant's Metaphysics of Morals: A Critical Guide. Cambridge University Press.
  2. From Friendship to Marriage: Revising Kant.Lara Denis - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 63 (1):1-28.
    This paper examines Kant ’s accounts of friendship and marriage, and argues for what can be called an ideal of “moral marriage ” based on Kant ’s notion of moral friendship. After explaining why Kant values friendship so highly, it gives an account of the ways in which marriage falls far short, according to Kant, of what friendship has to offer. The paper then argues that many of Kant ’s reasons for finding marriage morally impoverished compared with friendship are wrong-headed. (...)
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  3.  78
    Kant's Metaphysics of Morals: A Critical Guide.Lara Denis (ed.) - 2010 - Cambridge University Press.
    Immanuel Kant's Metaphysics of Morals, containing the Doctrine of Right and Doctrine of Virtue, is his final major work of practical philosophy. Its focus is not rational beings in general but human beings in particular, and it presupposes and deepens Kant's earlier accounts of morality, freedom and moral psychology. In this volume of newly-commissioned essays, a distinguished team of contributors explores the Metaphysics of Morals in relation to Kant's earlier works, as well as examining themes which emerge from the text (...)
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  4. Kant's Conception of Virtue.Lara Denis - 2006 - In Paul Guyer (ed.), Cambridge Companion to Kant and Modern Philosophy. Cambridge University Press.
    In this paper, I explicate Kant’s theory of virtue and situate it within the context of theories of virtue before Kant (such as Aristotle, Hobbes, and Hume) and after Kant (such as Schiller and Schopenhauer). I explore Kant’s notions of virtue as a disposition to do one’s duty out of respect for the moral law, as moral strength in non-holy wills, as the moral disposition in conflict, and as moral self-constraint based on inner freedom. I distinguish between Kant’s notions of (...)
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  5. Kant's Ethics and Duties to Oneself.Lara Denis - 1997 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 78 (4):321–348.
    This paper investigates the nature and foundation of duties to oneself in Kant's moral theory. Duties to oneself embody the requirement of the formula of humanity that agents respect rational nature in them-selves as well as in others. So understood, duties to oneself are not subject to the sorts of conceptual objections often raised against duties to oneself; nor do these duties support objections that Kant's moral theory is overly demanding or produces agents who are preoccupied with their own virtue. (...)
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  6. Abortion and Kant's Formula of Universal Law.Lara Denis - 2007 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 37 (4):547-579.
    The formula of universal law (FUL) is a natural starting point for philosophers interested in a Kantian perspective on the morality of abortion. I argue, however, that FUL does not yield much in the way of promising or substantive conclusions regarding the morality of abortion. I first reveal how two philosophers' (Hare's and Gensler's) attempts to use Kantian considerations of universality and prescriptivity fail to provide analyses of abortion that are either compelling or true to Kant=s understanding of FUL. I (...)
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  7. Animality and Agency: A Kantian Approach to Abortion.Lara Denis - 2008 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (1):117-37.
    This paper situates abortion in the context of women’s duties to themselves. I argue that Kant’s fundamental moral requirement to respect oneself as a rational being, combined with Kant’s view of our animal nature, form the basis for a view of pregnancy and abortion that focuses on women’s agency and moral character without diminishing the importance of their bodies and emotions. The Kantian view of abortion that emerges takes abortion to be morally problematic, but sometimes permissible, and sometimes even required. (...)
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  8. Autonomy and the Highest Good.Lara Denis - 2005 - Kantian Review 10 (1):33-59.
    Kant’s ethics conceives of rational beings as autonomous–capable of legislating the moral law, and of motivating themselves to act out of respect for that law. Kant’s ethics also includes a notion of the highest good, the union of virtue with happiness proportional to, and consequent on, virtue. According to Kant, morality sets forth the highest good as an object of the totality of all things good as ends. Much about Kant’s conception of the highest good is controversial. This paper focuses (...)
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  9. Kant's Criticism of Atheism.Lara Denis - 2003 - Kant-Studien 94 (2):198-219.
    Although Kant argues that morality is prior to and independent of religion, Kant nevertheless claims that religion of a certain sort (“moral theism”) follows from morality, and that atheism poses threats to morality. Kant criticizes atheism as morally problematic in four ways: atheism robs the atheist of springs for moral action, leads the atheist to moral despair, corrupts the atheist’s moral character, and has a pernicious influence on the atheist’s community. I argue that Kant is right to say that moral (...)
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  10. Kant's Formula of the End in Itself: Some Recent Debates.Lara Denis - 2007 - Philosophy Compass 2 (2):244–257.
    This is a survey article in which I explore some important recent work on the topic in question, Kant’s formula of the end in itself (or “formula of humanity”). I first provide an overview of the formulation, including what the formula seems roughly to be saying, and what Kant’s main argument for it seems to be. I then call the reader’s attention to a variety of questions one might have about the import of and argument for this formula, alluding to (...)
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  11.  63
    Kant's Cold Sage and the Sublimity of Apathy.Lara Denis - 2000 - Kantian Review 4 (1):48-73.
    Some Kantian ethicists, myself included, have been trying to show how, contrary to popular belief, Kant makes an important place in his moral theory for emotions–especially love and sympathy. This paper confronts claims of Kant that seem to endorse an absence of sympathetic emotions. I analyze Kant’s accounts of different sorts of emotions (“affects,” “passions,” and “feelings”), and different sorts of emotional coolness (“apathy,” “self-mastery,” and “cold-bloodedness”). I focus on the particular way that Kant praises apathy, as “sublime,” in order (...)
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  12. Kant on the Wrongness of 'Unnatural' Sex.Lara Denis - 1999 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 16 (2):225-48.
    I consider Kant’s use of claims about “nature’s ends” in his arguments to establish maxims of homosexual sex, masturbation, and bestiality as constituting “unnatural” sexual vices, which are contrary to one’s duties to oneself as an animal and moral being. I argue, first, that the formula of humanity is the principle best suited for understanding duties to oneself as an animal and moral being; and second, that although natural teleology is relevant to some degree in specifying these duties, it cannot (...)
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  13. Kant's Conception of Duties Regarding Animals: Reconstruction and Reconsideration.Lara Denis - 2000 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 17 (4):405-23.
    In Kant’s moral theory, we do not have duties to animals, though we have duties with regard to them. I reconstruct Kant’s arguments for several types of duties with regard to animals and show that Kant’s theory imposes far more robust requirements on our treatment of animals than one would expect. Kant’s duties regarding animals are perfect and imperfect; they are primarily but not exclusively duties to oneself; and they condemn not merely cruelty to animals for its own sake, but (...)
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  14.  71
    Humanity, Obligation, and the Good Will: An Argument Against Dean's Interpretation of Humanity.Lara Denis - 2010 - Kantian Review 15 (1):118-141.
    Humanity is an important notion within Kant's moral theory. The humanity formulation of the categorical imperative commands: ‘So act that you use humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, always at the same time as an end, never merely as a means’ . Kant's analysis of ethical obligation and his expositions of rights and duties in the Metaphysics of Morals refer frequently to humanity. How we understand this concept, then, has signifcant implications for how (...)
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  15.  31
    Kantian Consequentialism.Lara Denis & David Cummiskey - 1998 - Philosophical Review 107 (1):130.
  16.  97
    Kant's Ethical Duties and Their Feminist Implications.Lara Denis - 2002 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy, Supplementary Volume 28 (Supplement):157-87.
    Many feminist philosophers have been highly critical of Kant’s ethics, either because of his rationalism or because of particular claims he makes about women in his writings on anthropology and political philosophy. In this paper, I call attention to the aspects of Kant’s ethical theory that make it attractive from a feminist standpoint. Kant’s duties to oneself are rich resource for feminism. These duties require women to act in ways that show respect for themselves as rational human agents by, e.g., (...)
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  17.  96
    Kant on the Perfection of Others.Lara Denis - 1999 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 37 (1):25-41.
    Kant claims that we have a duty to promote our own moral perfection, but not the moral perfection of others. I examine three types of argument for this asymmetry, as well as the implications of these arguments--and their success or failure--for Kantian theory. The arguments I consider say that (first) to promote others’ perfection is impossible; (second) to try to promote others’ perfection is impermissible; and (third) one cannot be obligated to promote both others’ perfection and one’s own. I argue (...)
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  18.  12
    Individual and Collective Flourishing in Kant's Philosophy.Lara Denis - 2008 - Kantian Review 13 (1):82-115.
    In ‘Happiness and Human Flourishing’, Thomas E. Hill, Jr, contrasts Kant's notion of happiness with that of human flourishing, explains the role of happiness in Kant's ethics, and suggests some reasons why Kant portrays happiness rather than flourishing as the non-moral good of the individual. While there is much I agree with in Hill's essay, I disagree with Hill on how best to conceive of human flourishing in Kant's philosophy, and on the importance of human flourishing in Kant's ethics. Comparing (...)
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  19.  70
    Review: McCarty, Kant's Theory of Action. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2010 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 48 (4):533-535.
    This significant, stimulating contribution to Kantian practical philosophy strives to interpret Kant’s theory of action in ways that will increase readers’ understanding and appreciation of Kant’s moral theory. Its thesis is that Kant combines metaphysical freedom and psychological determinism: our actions within the phenomenal world are causally determined by our prior psychological states in that world and are appearances of our free action in the noumenal world. McCarty argues for a metaphysical, “two-worlds” interpretation of Kant’s transcendental distinction between appearances and (...)
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  20.  53
    Review of Sally Sedgwick, Kant's Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals: An Introduction[REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2008 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2008 (12).
  21.  23
    Review: Louden, Kant's Impure Ethics. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2003 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 66 (2):491-493.
  22.  15
    Review: Sensen (Ed), Kant on Moral Autonomy[REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2014 - Kantian Review 19 (2):327-332.
  23.  5
    Kant’s Ethics and Duties to Oneself.Lara Denis - 1997 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 78 (4):321-348.
    : This paper investigates the nature and foundation of duties to oneself in Kant’s moral theory. Duties to oneself embody the requirement of the formula of humanity that agents respect rational nature in them‐selves as well as in others. So understood, duties to oneself are not subject to the sorts of conceptual objections often raised against duties to oneself; nor do these duties support objections that Kant’s moral theory is overly demanding or produces agents who are preoccupied with their own (...)
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  24.  19
    Kant’s Theory of Action.Lara Denis - 2010 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 48 (4):533-535.
    This significant, stimulating contribution to Kantian practical philosophy strives to interpret Kant’s theory of action in ways that will increase readers’ understanding and appreciation of Kant’s moral theory. Its thesis is that Kant combines metaphysical freedom and psychological determinism: our actions within the phenomenal world are causally determined by our prior psychological states in that world and are appearances of our free action in the noumenal world. McCarty argues for a metaphysical, “two-worlds” interpretation of Kant’s transcendental distinction between appearances and (...)
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  25.  11
    Kant on Moral Autonomy. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2014 - Kantian Review 19 (2):327-332.
  26. Christine M. Korsgaard, Creating the Kingdom of Ends Reviewed By.Lara Denis - 1997 - Philosophy in Review 17 (5):338-339.
     
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  27.  10
    Jens Timmermann, Ed. , Kant's Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals: A Critical Guide . Reviewed By.Lara Denis - 2011 - Philosophy in Review 31 (3):235-238.
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  28.  7
    Kant’s Defense of Common Moral Experience: A Phenomenological Account by Jeanine Grenberg.Lara Denis - 2015 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 53 (1):163-164.
  29.  4
    Kant's Ethical Duties and Their Feminist Implications.Lara Denis - 2002 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 32 (sup1):156-187.
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  30.  14
    Agent-Centered Morality: An Aristotelian Alternative to Kantian Internalism George W. Harris Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1999, Xi + 434 Pp., $60.00. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2001 - Dialogue 40 (4):849-.
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  31.  11
    Book Notes. [REVIEW]Maria Victoria Costa, Lara Denis, Andrew Fisher, Lori Watson & and Burleigh T. Wilkins - 2004 - Ethics 114 (4):859-863.
  32.  3
    Thomas E. Hill, Jr., Virtue, Rules, and Justice: Kantian Aspirations. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2014 - Social Theory and Practice 40 (2):339-345.
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  33.  1
    Abortion and Kant’s Formula of Universal Law.Lara Denis - 2007 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 37 (4):547-579.
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  34.  1
    Animality and Agency: A Kantian Approach to Abortion.Lara Denis - 2008 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (1):117-137.
    This paper situates abortion in the context of women’s duties to themselves. I argue that the fundamental Kantian requirement to respect oneself as a rational being, combined with Kanrs view of our animal nature, form the basis for a view of pregnancy and abortion that focuses on women’s agency and characters without diminishing the importance of their bodies and emotions. The Kantian view of abortion that emerges takes abortion to be morally problematic, but sometimes permissible, and sometimes even required.After sketching (...)
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  35.  1
    From Friendship to Marriage: Revising Kant.Lara Denis - 2001 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 63 (1):1-28.
    This paper examines Kant’s accounts of friendship and marriage, and argues for what can be called an ideal of “moral marriage” based on Kant’s notion of moral friendship. After explaining why Kant values friendship so highly, it gives an account of the ways in which marriage falls far short, according to Kant, of what friendship has to offer. The paper then argues that many of Kant’s reasons for finding marriage morally impoverished compared with friendship are wrong-headed. The paper further argues (...)
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  36.  1
    Kant on the Perfection of Others.Lara Denis - 1999 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 37 (1):21-41.
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  37. Agent-Centered Morality. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2001 - Dialogue 40 (4):849-851.
     
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  38. Christine M. Korsgaard, Creating the Kingdom of Ends. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 1997 - Philosophy in Review 17:338-339.
     
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  39. Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals.Lara Denis (ed.) - 2005 - Broadview Press.
    Kant’s _Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals_, first published in 1785, is still one of the most widely read and influential works of moral philosophy. This Broadview edition combines a newly revised version of T.K. Abbott’s respected translation with material crucial for placing the _Groundwork_ in the context of Kant’s broader moral thought. A varied selection of other ethical writings by Kant on subjects including our moral duties, fundamental principles of justice, the concept of happiness, and the relation of morality (...)
     
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  40. Kant’s Ethical Duties and Their Feminist Implications.Lara Denis - 2002 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 32 (Supplement):157-187.
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  41. Kant’s Impure Ethics: From Rational Beings to Human Beings. [REVIEW]Lara Denis - 2003 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 66 (2):491-493.
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  42. Kant's Lectures on Ethics: A Critical Guide.Lara Denis & Oliver Sensen (eds.) - 2015 - Cambridge University Press.
    This is the first book devoted to an examination of Kant's lectures on ethics, which provide a unique and revealing perspective on the development of his views. In fifteen newly commissioned essays, leading Kant scholars discuss four sets of student notes reflecting different periods of Kant's career: those taken by Herder, Collins, Mrongovius and Vigilantius. The essays cover a diverse range of topics, from the relation between Kant's lectures and the Baumgarten textbooks, to obligation, virtue, love, the highest good, freedom, (...)
     
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  43.  90
    Moral Self-Regard: Duties to Oneself in Kant's Moral Theory.Lara Denis - 2001 - Routledge.
    _Moral Self-Regard_ draws on the work of Marcia Baron, Joseph Butler and Allen Wood, among others in this first extensive study of the nature, foundation and significance of duties to oneself in Kant's moral theory.
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  44. Sex and the Virtuous Kantian Agent.Lara Denis - 2006 - In Raja Halwani (ed.), Sex and Ethics: Essays in Sexuality, Virtue, and the Good Life. Palgrave-Macmillan.
    This paper explores how a virtuous Kantian agent would regard and express her sexuality. I argue both that Kant has a rich account of virtue, and that a virtuous Kantian agent should view her sexuality as a good thing–as an important aspect of her animal nature. On my view, the virtuous agent does not seek to suppress her sexuality, but rather to find modes and contexts for its expression that allow the agent to maintain her self-respect and to avoid degrading (...)
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