Week 15 - Groundwork III

We close our discussion of Kant’s moral theory by looking at his argument for freedom as autonomy in the third section of the Groundwork and related passages from the Critique of Practical Reason. We’ll try to assess how Kant’s strategy changes from the Groundwork to the second Critique and whether one approach is better than the other philosophically.

Readings

Questions

  • Why is freedom a property of all rational wills?
  • What does it mean to say that the will is ’autonomous’?
  • Why think that an autonomous will must be a good will?
  • In what sense does Kant meant to provide a proof of the moral law in section III?
  • What is the circle concerning the relationship between freedom and morality?
  • How does Kant think we can break out of the circle?