Kant on Reflection and Virtue

Kant on Reflection and Virtue

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There can be no doubt that Kant thought we should be reflective: we ought to care to make up our own minds about how things are and what is worth doing. Philosophical objections to the Kantian reflective ideal have centred on concerns about the excessive control that the reflective person is supposed to exert over their own mental life, and Kantians who feel the force of these objections have recently drawn attention to Kant's conception of moral virtue as it is developed in his later work, chiefly the Metaphysics of Morals. Melissa Merritt's book is a distinctive contribution to this recent turn to virtue in Kant scholarship. Merritt argues that we need a clearer, and textually more comprehensive, account of what reflection is, in order not only to understand Kant's account of virtue, but also to appreciate how it effectively rebuts long-standing objections to the Kantian reflective ideal.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 234 pages
  • 158 x 235 x 15mm | 450g
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Worked examples or Exercises
  • 1108424716
  • 9781108424714
  • 2,469,054

Table of contents

List of tables; Acknowledgements; Abbreviations and conventions for citing Kant's works; Introduction: rethinking the Kantian reflective ideal; Part I. Reflection: 1. Kant on the requirement to reflect; 2. Healthy human understanding; 3. Attention, perception, experience; Part II. Virtue: 4. Conceptions of reason and epistemic normativity; 5. Cognitive and moral virtue; 6. Virtue as a skill; 7. The cognitive basis of moral virtue; References; Index.
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Review quote

'... consistently rich and rewarding - both as a study of Kant and as a discussion of virtue. She engages with a wide range of Kant's writings, drawing particular attention to passages that many of Kant's readers (myself included) have tended to ignore.' Colin Marshall, Mind '... refreshing, creative, and careful ... a deeply rewarding work for anyone interested in Kant's picture of mind and morality.' SGIR Review 'Merritt's book is a very thoughtful and original treatment of foundational interpretive and philosophical problems. I have found studying Kant on Reflection and Virtue very rewarding, and I am certain that any readers interested in Kant or in Kantian ethics and epistemology will take a lot away from it.' Ethics
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About Melissa Merritt

Melissa Merritt is Senior Lecturer in philosophy at the University of New South Wales. She has published widely on Kant's theoretical and practical philosophy in journals including Philosophical Quarterly, European Journal of Philosophy, Southern Journal of Philosophy, British Journal for the History of Philosophy, and Kantian Review.
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