Categorical and agent-neutral reasons in Kantian justifications of morality

Philosophia 35 (1):23-41 (2007)
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Abstract

The dispute between Kantians and Humeans over whether practical reason can justify moral reasons for all agents is often characterized as a debate over whether reasons are hypothetical or categorical. Instead, this debate must be understood in terms of the distinction between agent-neutral and agent-relative reasons. This paper considers Alan Gewirth’s Reason and Morality as a case study of a Kantian justification of morality focused on deriving categorical reasons from hypothetical reasons. The case study demonstrates first, the possibility of categorical agent-relative reasons, and second, that inattention to this possibility has caused considerable confusion in the debate between Kantians and Humeans.

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References found in this work

The possibility of altruism.Thomas Nagel - 1970 - Oxford,: Clarendon P..
Reason and morality.Alan Gewirth - 1978 - Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Reason and Morality.Alan Gewirth - 1968 - Revue Philosophique de la France Et de l'Etranger 170 (4):444-445.
Foundationalism and practical reason.Joseph Heath - 1997 - Mind 106 (423):451-474.
Introduction.Garrett Cullity & Berys Gaut - 1997 - In Garrett Cullity & Berys Nigel Gaut (eds.), Ethics and practical reason. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 1-27.

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