Agency and Autonomy in Kants Moral Theory: Selected Essays

Paperback | February 23, 2006

byAndrews Reath

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Andrews Reath presents a selection of his best essays on various features of Kant's moral psychology and moral theory, with particular emphasis on his conception of rational agency and his conception of autonomy. The opening essays explore different elements of Kant's views about motivation, including his account of respect for morality as the distinctive moral motive and his view of the principle of happiness as a representation of the shared structure of non-moral choice. These essays stress the unity ofKant's moral psychology by arguing that moral and non-moral considerations motivate in essentially the same way. Several of the essays develop an original approach to Kant's conception of autonomy that emphasizes the political metaphors found throughout Kant's writings on ethics. They argue thatautonomy is best interpreted not as a psychological capacity, but as a kind of sovereignty: in claiming that moral agents have autonomy, Kant regards them as a kind of sovereign legislator with the power to give moral law through their willing. The final essays explore some of the implications ofthis conception of autonomy elsewhere in Kant's moral thought, arguing that his Formula of Universal Law uses this conception of autonomy to generate substantive moral principles and exploring the connection between Kantian self-legislation and duties to oneself. The collection offers revised versions of several previously published essays, as well as two new papers, 'Autonomy of the Will as the Foundation of Morality' and 'Agency and Universal Law'. It will be of interest to all students and scholars of Kant, and to many moral philosophers.

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Andrews Reath presents a selection of his best essays on various features of Kant's moral psychology and moral theory, with particular emphasis on his conception of rational agency and his conception of autonomy. The opening essays explore different elements of Kant's views about motivation, including his account of respect for moralit...

Andrews Reath is at University of California, Riverside.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.69 inPublished:February 23, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199288836

ISBN - 13:9780199288830

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Table of Contents

1. Kant's Theory of Moral Sensibility: Respect for the Moral Law and the Influence of Inclination2. Hedonism, Heteronomy, and Kant's Principle of Happiness3. The Categorical Imperative and Kant's Conception of Practical Rationality4. Legislating the Moral Law5. Autonomy of the Will as the Foundation of Morality6. Legislating for a Realm of Ends: The Social Dimension of Autonomy7. Agency and Universal Law8. Duties to Oneself and Self-Legislation9. Agency and the Imputation of Consequences in Kant's Ethics