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Anne Margaret Baxley offers a systematic interpretation of Kant's theory of virtue, whose most distinctive features have not been properly understood. She explores the rich moral psychology in Kant's later and less widely read works on ethics, and argues that the key to understanding his account of virtue is the concept of autocracy, a form of moral self-government in which reason rules over sensibility. Although certain aspects of Kant's theory bear comparison to more familiar Aristotelian claims about virtue, Baxley contends that its most important aspects combine to produce something different – a distinctively modern, egalitarian conception of virtue which is an important and overlooked alternative to the more traditional Greek views which have dominated contemporary virtue ethics.Read more
- Explains the relation between Kant's more widely read texts in ethics and his later works
- Demonstrates how the moral psychology central to Kant's account of virtue marks a significant development in his ethics
- Shows the distinctive features of Kant's theory of virtue which provide an important alternative to the more traditional Greek views usually found in contemporary virtue ethics
Reviews & endorsements
"....this contribution by Baxley (Washington Univ. in St. Louis) is noteworthy in its meticulous analysis of autocracy as the linchpin for understanding Kantian virtue.... For dedicated Kant scholars (and perhaps Schiller scholars) this book is a worthy addition, but it may be too advanced for most readers.... Recommended...."
--L.A. Wilkinson, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, CHOICESee more reviews
"...lucid, levelheaded and (from a Kantian perspective at least) deeply interesting book.... an impressive achievement and everyone who is interested in Kantian ethics and moral psychology ought to read Baxley's book..."
--Carsten Fogh Nielsen, Ph.D., University of Aarhus, Metapsychology Online Review
"...Anne Margaret Baxley’s book, Kant’s Theory of Virtue, is the most informative and comprehensive discussion of the nature and role of virtue in Kant’s ethics currently available..."
--Robert B. Louden, University of Southern Maine, Journal of the History of Philosophy
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- Date Published: February 2015
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781107491977
- length: 206 pages
- dimensions: 229 x 152 x 11 mm
- weight: 0.28kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
List of abbreviations
1. The good will, moral worth, and duty: concerns about Kant's rationalist moral psychology
2. Kant's Conception of Virtue and the autocracy of Pure Practical Reason
3. Virtue, human nature, and moral health: Kant's dispute with Schiller
4. The moral psychology of Kantian virtue
Conclusion: Kant's considered account of moral character and the good will reconsidered.
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