From Discipline and Autonomy: Kant's Theory of Moral Development

In Klas Roth & Chris W. Surprenant (eds.), Kant and Education: Interpretations and Commentary. New York: Routledge. pp. 163--176 (2011)
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In this paper I argue that Kant develops, in a number of texts, a detailed three stage theory of moral development which resembles the contemporary accounts of moral development defended by Lawrence Kohlberg and John Rawls. The first stage in this process is that of physical education and disciplining, followed by cultivating and civilising, with a third and final stage of moralising. The outcome of this process of moral development is a fully autonomous person. However, Kant’s account of moral development appears to be in tension with other elements of his moral philosophy. I identify two such tensions, which I call the knowledge and revolution tensions, and show why these tensions are illusory. As such, a proper understanding of Kant’s theory of moral development, far from exposing genuine tensions, helps rather to deepen our understanding of Kant’s moral philosophy.
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Critique of Practical Reason.Weldon, T. D.; Kant, Immanuel & Beck, Lewis White

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