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Questions tagged [kant]

Immanuel Kant was a German Enlightenment philosopher.

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The categorical imperative vs The 'golden rule'

According to the IEP, the golden rule: The most familiar version of the Golden Rule says, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Moral philosophy has barely taken notice of the ...
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Are the arguments of the Critique of Pure Reason still considered?

Realizing its importance in intellectual history, I am considering an intense study of Kant's Critique of Pure Reason. However, I wonder what the current status of the text is? To clarify: has it ...
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Is German idealism ontological, epistemic, or something more abstract?

On one hand Kant's transcendental idealism seems purely ontological: His noumena/phenomena distinction is essentially a form of dualism. Add to that: Marx considered himself a materialist in ...
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What does Kant mean when distinguishing time and space from experiences?

A novice, I do not feel prepared yet to, but shall in future, read Kant; please tell me if Kant's originals answer my question. Source: p 255, Think: A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy (1 ed, ...
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Spinoza's a priori proof for the existence of God

I am currently studying some aspects of Spinoza's philosophy, mainly in contrast to Kant. It seems to me that Spinoza is just the kind of "dogmatic metaphysician" Kant criticises. I know that Kant ...
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For Kant, why are all preferences only conditionally valuable?

It's not clear to me why rational beings are objective ends. It certainly seems possible that every rational being could hold itself as an end, but it is by no means the case necessary that they do ...
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Is there any similarity between Kant's noumena and the empty set?

Kant's ding-an-sich or noumena were roundly criticized by Fichte, Hegel, and other near contemporaries as incomprehensible, meaningless, or at least very unsatisfactory. How can we "know" or talk ...
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Must Kant's a priori concepts of Space and Time be known to us before the 12 pure Categories of the Understanding?

As I continue my deep read of Kant's first critique, I'm struck by the fact that both space and time are a priori concepts, known to us prior to any experience, CPR(A) Transcendental Aesthetic, S.7 p....
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Was Kant an Intuitionist about mathematical objects?

In regards to the ontology of mathematics, as far as I can understand, Kant believed that Mathematical objects existed only as features of our perception that influenced how we viewed things-in-...
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If one agrees with Quine's dissolution of the Analytic/Synthetic distinction, what is left of Kant's epistemology?

One of Kant's most important (if not the most important) result is his argument (proof?) that synthetic a priori knowledge is possible. If one agrees with Quine's argument against Analyticity as ...
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For Kant, are spider moms that eat their kids immoral?

When we talk about morality, do we mean to say morality for human beings? It is morally bad for human mothers to eat their newborns. Black widow spiders females eat some of their newborns after ...
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Did Kant consider Newtonian mechanics a priori?

Did Kant take Newtonian physics as being synthetic a priori? I get the feeling he did. If he did, how did he justify this, it seems like a huge blunder for such a careful thinker. I mean... Kant ...
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Is Hawking channeling Kant in his explanation of how the arrow of time works?

In "A Brief History of Time" - Chapter 9, Stephen Hawking gives an explanation of how the arrow of time works, i.e. why time seems to move forward in one direction while space can go in different ...
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Which was more important to Kant - good will or right actions?

I only know a bit about Kant from one college course, and I was wondering about Kant's approach to the question of what defines a good action. I know he rejected the consequentialist approach, and ...
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Can a Kantian bluff in poker?

Kantians aren't allowed to lie---if it were a universal law of nature that everyone lied all the time, no communication would be possible at all, no words would have meaning, and lying itself would ...
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How is a priori synthetic knowledge possible?

One of Kant's example of a priori synthetic knowledge is the knowledge of geometry, that is of space itself. It is a priori as it cannot be otherwise - it is independent of experience because it is a ...
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Can Kant's Copernican revolution be viewed as an extension of Wittgensteinian language games?

Forgive me if this question is clumsily posed. The so-called 'Copernican revolution' of declaring the mind as bringing objecthood and properties to objects, rather than their perception bringing ...
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How does autonomy as defined by Kant relate to respect for others?

I understand what Autonomy means. However, I fail to understand how it maps on to respect for others.
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Kant on the Essential Ends of Reason

In the CPR, Kant defines philosophy as "the science of the relation of all knowledge to the essential ends of human reason." What is meant here by 'essential ends'? This phrase recurs a few times but ...
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Is Kant's “noumenal self” argument on freedom flawed?

This is what is supposedly his claim: My noumenal self is an uncaused cause outside of time, which therefore is not subject to the deterministic laws of nature in accordance with which our ...
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How does capacity for reason 'exist undifferentiated in all of us'?

Source: Prof Michael Sandel, Justice: ..., Episode 06: "MIND YOUR MOTIVE" [in this episode, Prof Sandel introduces Kant.] 25:35: How many moral laws from Kant’s point of view are there in this room,...
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In Kantian ethics, how does one choose a universalizable maxim?

For a homework assignment, I am to apply Kantian ethics (the categorical imperative) to a concrete question. I purposely do not mention the actual homework problem in this question; this is purely an ...
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Is it unethical, according to Kant, to break copyright and pirate books online?

I live in Bangladesh. In my country, I don't get authentic, high quality foreign books about science, philosophy, psychology etc. Even if some bookstores sell those books, the price due to import tax ...
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How does Kant rule out permanent soul in his argument for the existence of external world?

I have been studying Stephan Körner's intro to Kant's philosophy. I'm not sure if in the following excerpt I make sense of the reasoning quoted from Kant. In fact, I wonder how the permanence must be ...
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How does Kant tie the categorical imperative to its noumenal manifestation

Locke rejected what is essentially Kant's categorical imperative: “that one should do only as he would be done unto” (Essay 1, Kindle Locations 650-652). The rejection was based on the fact that the ...
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Aesthetically judging without concepts?

In the Second Moment of the Critique of Judgement, Kant writes about how the universality of the judgment of beauty is without concepts. I understand what he is doing here, but keep wondering whether ...
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Does Kant think it's okay to lie to kids?

If Kant doesn't believe that kids are completely rational then would he say that it is okay to tell them a white lie?
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Two Kinds of Understanding

"Kant concludes §17 by contrasting the human understanding, which requires an act of synthesis to establish its unity, with another possible kind of understanding. This would be an understanding in ...
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A sketch of the critical kantian project

As I am tired of the scattering of side-problems of kantian philosophy that have to be seen in the light of the very idea behind kantian philosophy, I want to create a question covering the ...
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Kant's thing(s) in themselves and atomic physics

In answer to someone's question regarding Kant's idealist view of space vs. modern science, someone referred to the dichotomy between a cup as normally perceived and a cup as a collection of atoms. If ...
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In Kant's ethics, is it allowed to be richer than other people?

I've been reading a bit about Kant's moral philosophy. What I'm now trying to figure out is if the Categorical Imperative would demand a redistribution of wealth. Or in other words, if according to ...
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What is *lost* and *gained* in repudiating the analytic/synthetic distinction?

Analytic sentences are characterized as sentences whose truth values derive from their meanings alone. The truth of synthetic sentences depend on both meaning and fact. In the early modern ...
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What do contemporary philosophers think of Kant's categories of the understanding?

In the first Critique, Kant listed the different "categories" that are necessary "a priori" for human understanding : quantity, quality, modality and relation. (if my understanding is correct!) Are ...
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Was Kant's Categorical Imperative an answer to Hume's Is-Ought problem?

Hume asked the question how can one move from an 'is' to an 'ought' in his book, A Treatise on Human Nature: In every system of morality, which I have hitherto met with, I have always remarked, ...
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How are “conservation” and “happiness” the same thing for Kant?

Why does Kant equate "conservation" with "happiness" near the start of "Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals"? These seem like very different things (especially looking through an ...
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Kant's “Perpetual Peace” and separation of powers

Kant's "Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketch" states that democracy is a despotic form of government, because the laws are made and executed by the same power. This was published in 1795, after ...
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Kant's distinction of freedom as transcendental idea and as practical concept: What is the benefit?

Prompted by the current discussion about Kant’s concept of causality of freedom Can Free Will Exist In A Causal Material World? I would like to understand the scope and the difference of the two ...
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For Kant, how is pleasure in beauty disinterested?

Kant states that pleasure in beauty is not based on desire and does not produce any. But don't we usually have a desire to have things that are beautiful in our lives? Such as "this car is beautiful! ...
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Where can I read Kant's view of thinking as willing, spontaneity and re-presenting?

I am reading Martin Heidegger's Discourse on Thinking. At the beginning of "Conversation on a Country Path About Thinking*, the Scholar remarks: (page 58-9) But thinking, understood in the ...
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Kant — What does it mean to treat someone merely as a means?

Seems like circumventing someone's rational agency, their ability to choose their own end is what it means to treat someone merely as a means. But putting people in prison is circumventing their ...
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What are exactly intuitions in Kant's philosophy?

An intuition is a conscious objective direct representation of an object, according to A320/B376-77. It is direct in being non-conceptual, involving no mediating representation, and it is what ...
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How does Kant link the three subordinate formulations of the categorical imperative to the universal law?

How does Kant derive The Formula of an End in Itself, The Formula of Autonomy, and The Formula of the Kingdom of Ends from the The Formula of the Universal Law? So far, this is my understanding of it....
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Kant's categorical imperative: What precisely is the nature of the maxim that is universalised?

Using Kant’s categorical imperative, I understand that in order to ‘test’ the morality of an intended action, one has to take the maxim of their action and universalise it. If it is self contradictory ...
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Is the Body without Organs a phase space? Or an image of the actual body?

Reading Deleuze and Guattari's Anti-Oedipus, I am unclear on the nature of the Body without Organs. Most literature seems to describe this body as a phase space in the mathematical sense of the term, ...
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Does Kant have a Fourth Critique?

Those familiar with the architectonic nature of Immanuel Kant's philosophy argue about the difference between the three critiques (Critique of Pure Reason; Critique of Practical Reason; and the ...
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What are Kant's adiaphora?

Studying Kant's Perpetual Peace I happened to notice the concept of adiaphora. Further investigations brought up almost nothing: There are several references to adiaphora in Kant's work that clearly ...
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Hiring someone is unethical to Kantians because you're treating them as a means?

I read it is unethical to hire someone because it breaks the second categorical imperative which is to treat people as an ends. If by hiring someone to do something you are treating them as a means to ...
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How does Locke's realism differ from Kant's realism?

I've been studying Locke recently and I'm having trouble understanding how his epistemic position differs from Kant's, and by implication, why did Kant see his epistemology as being so revolutionary ...
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What did Kant mean by 'courtesy of the heart'?

I bolded and italicised Kant's metaphor below. Source: p. 46 Bottom. Ethics: A Beginner's Guide (2015) by Peter Cave. Universal dignity: Arguing for the dignity of, and respect due, to all ...
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Kants universalization explained, How does one universalize a thing?

I am having some doubts in understanding universalisation of maxims in Kants Categorical Imperative. For instance, one can determine whether a maxim of lying to secure a loan is moral by ...