Department of Philosophy

Workshop on Kant's Moral Philosophy

From Monday 12th to Wednesday 14th of May there will be a workshop on Kant's moral philosophy in the Department of Philosophy, Sydnesplassen 12/13, room 2010. Open for all!

Image of Kant + workshop programme
Composite image: Kant and the workshop programme
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Dr Jens Timmermann, Reader in Moral Philosophy at the University of St Andrews, Scotland, will head the workshop:

Monday May 12, 13:15-15:00:

Introduction. Kant’s practical philosophy

A brief survey of Kant’s ethical theory and philosophy of action, covering topics such as action from duty (vs. action in conformity with duty) and the workings of Kant’s moral principle, the categorical imperative. Suggested reading: Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals (1785), Section I.


Tuesday May 13, 12:15-15:00:

Kantian Imprudence. Why do we do things that harm our interests?

We shall be looking at texts that explain Kant’s notion of happiness and the difficulties involved in pursuing it. Why do we do what turns out to be bad for us? Kant’s answer is in accordance with the Socratic intellectualist tradition that has its roots in Plato’s Protagoras. Imprudent action results from a cognitive defect. Suggested readings: Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, Section II; Critique of Practical Reason (1788), Analytic, Chapter I.


Wednesday May 14, 12:15-15:00:

Kantian Immorality. Why do we do immoral things?

Kant’s explanation of immoral action is radically different from his theory of imprudent action. We can (and do) clearheadedly choose what we know to be immoral, under the guise of the pleasant. Immoral action is therefore not the result of a cognitive problem, but a volitional fault. This account differs significantly from intellectualist readings of Kantian immorality popularised by philosophers like Christine Korsgaard and Andrews Reath. Suggested reading: Religion within the Limits of Mere Reason (1793), Section I.


For more information, please see the attached workshop programme on the right of this page.