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Navigating the Moral Landscape with Immanuel Kant
August 22, 2021 at 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm BST
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Our philosopher of the month, Immanuel Kant, stands in the center of modern philosophy. Kant was one of the most influential philosophers of the Enlightenment era. His body of work ranges across epistemology, aesthetics, metaphysics, and ethics. He was deeply engaged with the philosophical issues of his time.
Kant is famous for his moral philosophy, covered in his works, Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals, Critique of Practical Reason, and Metaphysics of Morals. His philosophy around morality doesn’t allow any space for ambiguity. Kant believed in a single supreme code of moral agency, which he termed as Categorical Imperative.
In Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals, Kant writes, Act in such a way that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in the person of any other, never merely as a means to an end, but always at the same time as an end. The bigger question to reflect upon is whether it’s that simple when multiple variables are at play in our lives.
Moral philosophy is messy; there aren’t any straightforward answers. In these times of individualistic-driven societies, can the Kantian moral agency help us lead the good life? We will explore the following themes in the salon.
- Can morality help solve the modern-day trolley problems ( fake news, pandemic, cyberbullying, inequality, harassment, abuse, technology ethics)?
- Can moral realism, led by science, help us navigate our ethical dilemmas?
- Can we be “perfectly wonderful” without being “perfectly moral”?
This salon is the sixth of an 11-month Interintellect series exploring the evolution and story of Western philosophers and their ideas through ‘The Story of Philosophy by Will Durant. In subsequent months, we will explore key philosophers in turn by reading the relevant chapter of Durant’s book and additional texts. Click here to find out more about this salon series and join us on this journey exploring the story of philosophy.
The group will be most valuable for everyone if we all set out to contribute what we can in the spirit of vigorous and open discussion.
We look forward to seeing you there.
Additional Reading :
- The Story of Philosophy by Will Durant – Immanuel Kant
- What Immanuel Kant Can Teach Us About Panic Buying and Isolation?
- Why is it better not to aim at being morally perfect?
- Is technology impacting our morality?
- BBC In Our Time Podcast
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