Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-55b6f6c457-cn8nj Total loading time: 0.174 Render date: 2021-09-27T12:49:55.189Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

Degrees of Responsibility in Kant’s Practical Philosophy

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  30 June 2015

Claudia Blöser*
Affiliation:
Goethe University Frankfurt am Main

Abstract

It has been argued that Kant’s practical philosophy cannot allow for degrees of responsibility for one’s 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.

Type
Articles
Copyright
© Kantian Review 2015 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Allison, Henry E. (1990) Kant’s Theory of Freedom. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Austin, John L. (1961 [orig. 1956]) ‘A Plea for Excuses’. In Philosophical Papers (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 123152.Google Scholar
Blöser, Claudia (2013) ‘The Defeasible Structure of Ascriptions of Responsibility’. Grazer Philosophische Studien, Special issue Defeasibility, 87, 129150.Google Scholar
Blöser, Claudia (2014) Zurechnung bei Kant. Zum Zusammenhang von Person und Handlung in Kants praktischer Philosophie. Berlin and New York: De Gruyter.Google Scholar
Duff, Antony (2009) ‘Legal and Moral Responsibility’. Philosophy Compass, 4/6, 978986.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Engstrom, Stephen (1988) ‘Conditioned Autonomy’. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 48(3), 435453.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Frierson, Patrick (2003) Freedom and Anthropology in Kant’s Moral Philosophy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Frierson, Patrick (2008) ‘Empirical Psychology, Common Sense, and Kant’s Empirical Markers for Moral Responsibility’. Studies in the History and Philosophy of Science, 39(4), 473482.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Gilabert, Pablo (2010) ‘Kant and the Claims of the Poor’. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 81(2), 382418.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Guevara, Daniel (1999) ‘The Impossibility of Supererogation in Kant’s Moral Theory’. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 59, 593624.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hruschka, Joachim (1986) ‘Imputation’. Brigham Young University Law Review, 3, 669710.Google Scholar
Joerden, Jan C. (1991) ‘Zwei Formeln in Kants Zurechnungslehre’. Archiv für Rechts-und Sozialphilosophie, 77(4), 525538.Google Scholar
Johnson, Robert N. (1996) ‘Kant’s Conception of Merit’. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly, 77, 310334.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kant, Immanuel (1996a) Metaphysics of Morals. Trans. Mary Gregor. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kant, Immanuel (1996b) Critique of Practical Reason. Trans. Mary Gregor. In Mary Gregor (ed.), Practical Philosophy (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), 137271.Google Scholar
Kant, Immanuel (1996c) Religion Within the Limits of Reason Alone Trans. Allen Wood and George di Giovanni. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Kant, Immanuel (1997) Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals. Ed. and trans Mary Gregor. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Kant, Immanuel (1998) Critique of Pure Reason. Trans. Paul Guyer and Allen Wood. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kant, Immanuel (2006) Anthropology from a Pragmatic Point of View. Trans. Robert B. Louden. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
Korsgaard, Christine (1996) Creating the Kingdom of Ends. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Reath, Andrews (2006) ‘Agency and the Imputation of Consequences in Kant’s Ethics’. In Agency and Autonomy in Kant’s Moral Theory (Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press), 250269.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Schapiro, Tamar (1999) ‘What is a Child?’. Ethics, 109, 715738.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Strawson, Peter F. (2003 [orig. 1963]) ‘Freedom and Resentment’. In Gary Watson (ed.), Free Will (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 7294.Google Scholar
Timmermann, Jens (2008) ‘Agency and Imputation: Comments on Reath’. Philosophical Books, 49(2), 114124.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Timmermann, Jens (2013) ‘Kantian Dilemmas? Moral Conflict in Kant’s Ethical Theory’. Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie, 95(1), 3664.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wallace, R. Jay (1994) Responsibility and the Moral Sentiments. Cambridge, MA, and London: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
Watson, Gary (1987) ‘Responsibility and the Limits of Evil: Variations on a Strawsonian Theme’. In Ferdinand Schoeman (ed.), Responsibility, Character and the Emotions: New Essays in Moral Psychology (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), 256286.Google Scholar
Watson, Gary (2012) ‘Standing in Judgment’. In D. Justin Coates and Neal A. Tognazzini (eds), Blame: Its Nature and Norms (Oxford: Oxford University Press), 282302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
7
Cited by

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Degrees of Responsibility in Kant’s Practical Philosophy
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Degrees of Responsibility in Kant’s Practical Philosophy
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Degrees of Responsibility in Kant’s Practical Philosophy
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *