Positive Duties, Maxim Realism and the Deliberative Field

Philosophical Inquiry 41 (4):2-34 (2017)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
My goal in this paper is to show that it is not the case that positive duties can be derived from Kant’s so-called universalizability tests. I begin by explaining in detail what I mean by this and distinguishing it from a few things that I am not doing in this paper. After that, I confront the idea of a maxim contradictory, a concept that is advanced by many com- mentators in the attempt to derive positive duties from the universalizability tests. I ex- plain what a maxim contradictory is and how the concept is used to derive positive duties. Then I argue that the notion of a maxim contradictory presupposes an objectionable form of maxim realism. I move from there to the idea of a maxim contrary and the deliberative field. These two ideas are used in tandem by commentators who do not appeal to maxim contradictories. I explain how these concepts are used to derive positive duties and then I argue that there is a systematic error in the derivations that enables one to see that they cannot work.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Upload history
Archival date: 2017-07-21
View other versions
Added to PP index

Total views
549 ( #13,636 of 71,145 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
32 ( #26,127 of 71,145 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks on external links on PhilPapers.