Kants Freiheitsargument. Diskussion von Heiko Puls: Sittliches Bewusstsein und Kategorischer Imperativ in Kants Grundlegung: Ein Kommentar zum dritten Abschnitt. Berlin und Boston: De Gruyter, 2016. 318 S.

Kantian Journal 37 (2):64-89 (2018)
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Heiko Puls’ work Sittliches Bewusstsein und Kategorischer Imperativ in Kants Grundlegung: Ein Kommentar zum dritten Abschnitt, presents an attempt to show that, in the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, Kant’s argumentation for the objective value of the categorical imperative is almost based upon the same principle as the one presented in the second Critique. More precisely, Puls claims that, like in the Critique of Practical Reason, the Groundwork operates with some kind of fact of reason-theory, which means that our consciousness of the moral law is the ratio cognoscendi of our freedom of will. Accordingly, there is no conclusion from a kind of non-moral consciousness of freedom to the freedom of will and from here to the objective value of the categorical imperative, as many interpreters assume. Due to the ambitiousness of his main thesis and his detailed and subtle way of arguing, Puls’ work represents an important and innovative contribution to recent research on Kant’s Groundwork. Nevertheless, his interpretations sometimes seem to favour analysis of loose philological relationships over closer looks on the contexts of passages. Or he focuses excessively on isolated textual evidences for his readings without appropriately recognising the various other evidences against it. In what follows, I give examples for this criticism.
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