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mark makes it doubtful whether by “satisfaction” he means pleasure, as the
alternative would require. But if he is suggesting the alternative interpreta-
tion, then my aim here could be construed as developing his suggestion by (a)
distinguishing it from Reath™s proposal and (b) shedding light on its textual
basis.
29. Beck treats the concept of the capacity of desire in a way that is typical for
contemporary scholars. In his classic commentary on the second Critique, he
employs the concept, but does not focus on explicating it. See, for example,
Beck, A Commentary on Kant™s “Critique of Practical Reason,” 94“97.
30. When an agent exercises her capacity of desire, she tries to realize an object.
Kant, it is worth noting, does not exclude mental objects from the set of those
Notes to pp. 26“28 199

an agent might try to realize in exercising this capacity. For example, guided by
my idea of remembering the name of my ¬rst mathematics teacher, I might try
to remember it.
31. Of course, an agent™s pathological interest in something is not necessarily an inter-
est that stems from illness or an interest in something unhealthy. In this context,
“pathological” does not connote disease. It means rather sensory, that is, having
to do with sensation.
32. In Kant™s vocabulary, the term “agreeableness” (Annehmlichkeit) designates a
kind of sensation. See, for example, KpV 22, where Kant speaks of the “sensation
of agreeableness.” To say that something is agreeable to a person is to say that
it enables him to experience the sensation of agreeableness. Furthermore, on
Kant™s view, to experience the sensation of agreeableness is to experience plea-
sure: agreeableness is a kind of pleasure. For the most part, Kant seems to use
the terms “pleasure” (Lust) and “agreeableness” interchangeably. See, for ex-
ample, KpV 23. It appears, however, that “pleasure” has a wider extension than
“agreeableness,” since Kant employs the term “moral pleasure” (e.g., at MS 378)
but, to my knowledge, not “moral agreeableness.”
33. According to one common usage, the German sofern is equivalent to the German
im Fall, daß (in case that) or vorausgesetzt, daß (supposing that) (Gerhard Wahrig,
ed., Deutsches W¨rterbuch [G¨ tersloh: Bertelsmann, 1986], 1188). See also Jacob
u
o
Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm, eds., Deutsches W¨rterbuch, vol. 10, pt. 1 (Leipzig:
o
Hirzel, 1905), 1402. Not surprisingly, we ¬nd Kant using sofern in a way that
makes it seem equivalent to “only if.” For example, at MS 223 Kant says: “An
action is called a deed insofar [sofern] as it comes under obligatory laws.” But
sofern can also mean “to the extent that.” See Grimm and Grimm, 1402.
34. The conclusion that Kant™s claim regarding acting from inclination amounts to
this seems to be supported by the following assertion Kant makes at GMS 442,
note: “every empirical interest promises to contribute to our well-being by the
agreeableness that something affords, whether this happens immediately and
without a view to advantage or with regard for it.”
35. Reath, “Hedonism, Heteronomy and Kant™s Principle of Happiness,” 50.
36. In his Anthropology, Kant also de¬nes inclinations as habitual desires. See Anth
251 and 265. In the Religion, Kant employs a different, narrower sense of incli-
nation. He states that to have an inclination, we must be acquainted with the
object of our desire. He contrasts inclination with instinct, “which is a felt want
to do or to enjoy something of which one has as yet no conception (such as
the constructive impulse in animals, or the sexual impulse)” (Rel 28“29, note;
English ed. 24, note).
37. The question may arise of why Kant here writes of desire in the narrow sense:
what would be desire in the broad sense? In my view, Kant holds that both actions
done from duty and ones not done from duty involve an agent™s determining
his capacity of desire. To put the point roughly, both kinds of action involve the
agent™s choosing to realize some object. An agent has a desire in the broad sense
for an object when he has determined his capacity of desire with respect to this
object. Yet only if his ground for determining his capacity of desire included
the prospect of his own pleasure does the agent have a desire in the narrow
sense for the object. If the agent™s ground for choosing to realize some object
Notes to pp. 29“33
200

did not include the prospect of his own pleasure “ for example, if the agent
set himself to realize it solely because he thought doing so was commanded by
the Categorical Imperative “ then the agent has a desire in the broad sense for
the object but not a desire in the narrow sense for it. Of course, this reading
of Kant™s notion of desire in the narrow sense rests on my particular analysis of
MS 212.
38. See Reath, “Hedonism, Heteronomy and Kant™s Principle of Happiness,” 47.
39. At this point, a defender of Reath™s interpretation might make the following
argument: “Granted, the capacity of desire is not the capacity to have a desire.
Nevertheless, to say that an agent™s capacity of desire has been “determined”
is only to say that she has come to have a desire. It is not to say that she has,
through her representation of an object, chosen to realize it. Therefore, as
Reath argues, Kant™s Metaphysics of Morals account merely suggests that pleasure
plays a role in our coming to have inclinations.” In response to this argument,
let me say that I ¬nd no evidence that Kant conceived of the determination
(Bestimmung) of the capacity of desire in this way. Actually, there is evidence
that he conceived of it in the way I suggest. In a note to the First Introduction
to the Critique of Judgment, Kant analyzes empty wishes and longings in terms of
the “determination” of the capacity of desire. An agent has an empty wish, he
suggests, just in case, through her representation of an object, she determines
her forces to realize this object, even though it is impossible for her to realize it.
He goes on to say: “It is indeed a not unimportant problem for anthropology to
investigate why it is that nature has given us the predisposition to such fruitless
expenditure of our forces as [we see in] empty wishes and longings (which
certainly play a large role in human life). It seems to me that here, as in all
else, nature has made wise provisions. For if we had to assure ourselves that we
can in fact produce the object, before the representation of it could determine
us to apply our forces, our forces would presumably remain largely unused”
(KUE 231, note). Kant seems to suggest here that the determination of an agent™s
capacity of desire is equivalent to her actually setting herself to try to realize an
object.
40. At GMS 400, Kant says that the will “must be determined by the formal principle
of volition as such when an action is done from duty, where every material
principle has been withdrawn from it.”
41. Typically, Kant de¬nes happiness (roughly) as the complete satisfaction of all
inclinations over a lifetime. See, for example, KrV A 806/B 834; GMS 399,
405; KpV 73, 124; Rel 58 (English ed. 51). Precisely how his hedonistic and
inclination-based de¬nitions of happiness are supposed to cohere with one
another is a complex issue. For one attempt to resolve it, see Virginia Wike,
Kant on Happiness in Ethics (Albany: State University of New York Press, 1994),
chap. 1.
42. Thanks to Michael Slote for this example.


Chapter 2: Transcendental Freedom and the Derivation
of the Formula of Universal Law
1. For example, in section 2 he aims to show that no “material” practical principle
could be the supreme principle of morality (KpV 21“22).
Notes to pp. 35“41 201

2. Henry E. Allison, Idealism and Freedom (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press,
1996), xx.
3. Henry E. Allison, Kant™s Theory of Freedom (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1990), 204.
4. Allison, Idealism, 204.
5. Ibid., xviii.
6. Ibid.
7. Ibid., 131.
8. Allison acknowledges this point. See ibid., 130.
9. See, for example, ibid., 130“131. At Idealism, 130, Allison says that “the Incor-
poration Thesis is best seen as a general thesis about how motives function in
the case of ¬nite rational agents.” He goes on (130“131) to say that “although
a ¬nite rational agent is sensuously or “pathologically” affected, that is to say, it
¬nds itself with a set of given inclinations and desires, which provide possible
motives or reasons to act, it is not causally necessitated to act on the basis of any
of them.”
10. See, for example, ibid., 131.
11. Ibid., 132.
12. See Allison, Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 207, and Idealism, 151“152.
13. Allison, Idealism, 152. I am simply assuming here that Allison™s account of tran-
scendental freedom is on target. One might argue that, at least in the Critique
of Pure Reason, transcendental freedom amounts to bare independence from
natural causes.
14. Allison credits Karl Ameriks and Paul Guyer with raising this sort of question.
See Idealism, 124.
15. Ibid., 123“128.
16. Ibid., 138.
17. Ibid., 152; see also Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 207“208.
18. See Thomas Nagel, “Universality and the Re¬‚ective Self,” in Christine
M. Korsgaard, The Sources of Normativity, ed. Onora O™Neill (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1996), 201“203.
19. Allison, Idealism, 152, and Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 208.
20. Allison, Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 208.
21. Ibid., 209. See also Idealism, 152.
22. Allison, Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 210.
23. That Allison agrees that each maxim contains, if only implicitly, a description
of an end becomes evident at Idealism, 119, and Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 90“91.
24. Allison, Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 210.
25. Reath challenges Allison™s argument on the grounds that it does not elimi-
nate the possibility that the “Principle of Happiness,” rather than the moral
law, could be legitimately adopted by a transcendentally free rational agent as
his fundamental principle. See Andrews Reath, “Intelligible Character and the
Reciprocity Thesis,” Inquiry 36 (1993): 427. Reath™s challenge is aimed at step
4 rather than step 3 of Allison™s argument.
26. This sort of response is suggested by Allison™s reply to the challenge of Andrews
Reath (mentioned in note 25). See Allison, Idealism, 117.
27. For an example of Kant™s making this move, see GMS 416: “[O]nly law brings
with it the concept of an unconditional and objective and hence universally valid
Notes to pp. 42“53
202

necessity” (emphasis added; Kant™s emphasis omitted). Kant, of course, makes
it abundantly clear that universally valid means binding on all rational beings
(see, e.g., KpV 32).
28. Allison, Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 212, and Idealism, 152.
29. Kant acknowledges that sometimes “reason employs the unity of the maxims
in general, a unity which is inherent in the moral law, merely to bestow upon
the incentives of inclination, under the name of happiness, a unity of maxims
which otherwise they cannot have. (For example, truthfulness, if adopted as a
basic principle, delivers us from the anxiety of making our lies agree with one
another and of not being entangled by their serpent coils)” (Rel 36“37, English
ed. 32).
30. Allison, Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 213.
31. Allison, Idealism, 152“153. See also his Kant™s Theory of Freedom, 213.


Chapter 3: The Derivation of the Formula of Humanity
1. Here I am following Hill. See Thomas E. Hill Jr., Dignity and Practical Reason
in Kant™s Moral Theory (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1992), 38“41. For a
slightly different account of what Kant means by “humanity,” see Allen W. Wood,
“Humanity as End in Itself,” in Proceedings of the Eighth International Kant Congress,
vol. 1, ed. Hoke Robinson and Gordon Brittan (Milwaukee: Marquette University
Press, 1995), 306.
2. On my reading, it simply belongs to Kant™s concept of an agent™s having a
particular practical principle that he have a suf¬cient ground (motive) to act
on it. See section 1.8.
3. He makes the claim at KpV 60“61. By the time he makes it, Kant is obviously
operating not only with the view that he has offered a successful derivation of the
Formula of Universal Law (see KpV 41) but also that the Formula of Universal
Law is valid. At KpV 31, he states that consciousness of the moral law, that is, the
Formula of Universal Law, may be called a “fact of reason.”
4. Amartya Sen, “Evaluator Relativity and Consequential Evaluation,” Philosophy
and Public Affairs 12 (1983): 114.
5. One might be concerned that this distinction Kant makes between natural laws
and practical laws threatens his thesis of the unity of reason. According to this
thesis, practical and speculative reason are uni¬ed in a common principle.
“[T]here can, in the end,” claims Kant, “be only one and the same reason,
which must be distinguished merely in its application” (GMS 391). Now Kant
seems to assert that speculative reason is constitutive of natural laws, laws of
what is, and practical reason is constitutive of practical laws, that is, laws of
what ought to be. Yet how could this be if practical and speculative reason were
uni¬ed in a common principle? Recently, Neiman has claimed that for Kant
reason, whether speculative or practical, has the role of providing laws “that
tell us what ought to happen, even if it never does, not laws of nature, which
tell us what does happen” (Susan Neiman, The Unity of Reason [Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 1994], 108). Neiman suggests that on Kant™s considered view
speculative reason is not constitutive of natural laws but, when employed prop-
erly, is regulative. Speculative reason urges us toward the end of complete and
systematic knowledge of the realm of nature. See, for example, 125“129. If, as
Neiman asserts, for Kant both speculative and practical reason are regulative
Notes to pp. 54“58 203

in the sense of providing ends and standards for activity, then Kant™s unity of
reason thesis seems less problematic than it would if he held speculative reason
to be constitutive of natural laws.
6. Of course, Kant might, in the end, simply claim that it belongs to his concept
of a practical law that it contain “the very same determining ground of the will in
all cases and for all rational beings.” If we embrace this concept, it does follow
that, if there is a practical law (categorical imperative), then each rational agent
must hold that some object is (or objects are) unconditionally good. But then
the question arises: why should we embrace this concept?
7. See the second full paragraph at GMS 428.
8. See Christine M. Korsgaard, The Sources of Normativity, ed. Onora O™Neill
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 122.
9. Parts of sections 3.4“7 stem from Samuel J. Kerstein, “Korsgaard™s Kantian Ar-
guments for the Value of Humanity,” Canadian Journal of Philosophy 31 (March
2001): 23“52.
10. For a brief criticism of the textual accuracy of the argument Korsgaard attributes
to Kant, see Berys Gaut, “The Structure of Practical Reason,” in Ethics and Practi-
cal Reason, ed. Garrett Cullity and Berys Gaut (Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1997), 173“174.
11. Korsgaard says: “In the argument for the Formula of Humanity, as I under-
stand it, Kant uses the premise that when we act we take ourselves to be acting
reasonably and so we suppose that our end is, in his sense, objectively good”
(Christine M. Korsgaard, “Kant™s Formula of Humanity,” in Creating the Kingdom
of Ends [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996], 116). Later Korsgaard
asks: “Suppose that you make a choice, and you believe what you have opted
for is a good thing. How can you justify it or account for its goodness?” (ibid.,
121). Korsgaard appears to use the terms “good end” and “objectively good
end” interchangeably. I employ the simpler term “good end.”
12. Ibid., 115.
13. Ibid., 114.
14. Ibid., 115; see also 120, 122.
15. Korsgaard says: “If one™s end cannot be shared, and so cannot be an object of
the faculty of desire for everyone, it cannot be good” (ibid., 116).
16. Ibid., 122.
17. Christine M. Korsgaard, “Aristotle and Kant on the Source of Value,” in Creating
the Kingdom of Ends (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 227. See
also Korsgaard, “Two Distinctions in Goodness,” in Creating the Kingdom of Ends
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 259.
18. Korsgaard, “Humanity,” 114“119.
19. See Korsgaard, The Sources of Normativity, 122. Korsgaard there suggests that the
argument she attributes to Kant in “Kant™s Formula of Humanity,” namely what
I call the “regressive argument,” supports the following conclusion. Unless an
agent takes humanity to be unconditionally valuable, he must embrace complete
practical skepticism. If the regressive argument is effective, it demonstrates that,
if an agent maintains that some of his ends are good, then he must hold rational
nature to be unconditionally good. In other words, an agent must either hold
humanity to be unconditionally good or give up the notion that he has good ends
in Korsgaard™s very robust sense. Korsgaard appears to believe that an agent™s
abandoning the notion that he has good ends in her sense would force him into
Notes to pp. 59“62
204

complete practical skepticism. If an agent gives up this notion, then, rationally
speaking, he ¬nds himself without reasons for his actions. Unless Korsgaard
holds this, it is totally unclear how the regressive argument is supposed to sup-
port her conclusion. She needs to block the possibility that it would be rational
to deny that one has good ends (and thereby deny the necessity of holding
humanity to be unconditionally good), yet to af¬rm that one has reasons for
his actions.
20. This example stems from Gaut, “The Structure of Practical Reason,” 174.
21. In a context similar to that of the present discussion, Allen Wood recognizes that
one might raise an objection to the sort of argument Korsgaard (and presumably
Kant) want to make here. The objection is that “if y is something valuable and
x is its source, it does not in general follow that x is something valuable, still
less that it is objectively valuable or an end in itself” (Allen W. Wood, Kant™s
Ethical Thought [Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999], 130). Wood
responds to this objection by claiming that it misunderstands the argument. In
the argument, says Wood, “rational nature is not being viewed as the source of
good things (i.e., of their existence), but instead as the source of the fact of their
goodness” (ibid., 130). I do not believe that Wood™s response here threatens
my counterexample. To use Wood™s terms, in my example rational disapproval
is being viewed as the source of the fact of the badness of bad things. And
that rational disapproval is being viewed as the source of this fact does not
entail that rational disapproval must itself be viewed to be bad at all, let alone
unconditionally bad. So the question remains: why must the source of the fact
of good things™ goodness be viewed to be good at all, let alone unconditionally
good?
22. In The Sources of Normativity, 122, Korsgaard offers a “fancy new model” of the
regressive argument. For criticism of this new version of the argument “ a version
that appeals to the notion of a “practical identity” “ see Kerstein, “Korsgaard™s
Kantian Arguments for the Value of Humanity,” 42“51.
23. Korsgaard, “Humanity,” 117.
24. Ibid., 110.
25. See ibid., 111, and Christine M. Korsgaard, “Motivation, Metaphysics, and the
Value of the Self,” Ethics 109 (1998): 55.
26. Korsgaard, “Humanity,” 110“111.
27. See ibid., 111, 113.
28. For evidence that Korsgaard is using “humanity” as a synonym for rational na-
ture, see ibid., 110“114. For evidence that she equates rational nature with the
power of rational choice, see ibid., 123. At 123 Korsgaard says that “humanity is
the power of rational choice.”
29. See ibid., 119“124. For a summary of the regressive argument, see Korsgaard,
“Two Distinctions in Goodness,” 256“262. See also Korsgaard, “Aristotle and
Kant on the Source of Value,” 239“243.
30. For evidence that this is the notion of a suf¬cient condition that Korsgaard has
in mind, see Korsgaard, “Humanity,” 122.
31. Ibid., 121.
32. See GMS 393“395. For a recent criticism of Kant™s argument, especially as a
response to the kind of value realism I have discussed, see Gaut, “The Structure
of Practical Reason,” 165“170.
Notes to pp. 63“70 205

33. Korsgaard, “Humanity,” 121.
34. Ibid.
35. Ibid., 122.
36. Ibid.
37. Ibid.
38. Ibid.
39. Ibid., 123.
40. Ibid.
41. Ibid.
42. For this conception of happiness in Kant, see, for example, GMS 399, 405.
43. It is not logically impossible for everyone to be happy, even on Kant™s desire-
satisfaction account of happiness. For we can coherently imagine a world in
which every person always gets what he wants. Of course, in this imagined world,
no one person™s satisfying any of his desires would preclude any other person
from satisfying any of her desires.
44. Kant says that “an impartial rational spectator can take no delight in seeing the
uninterrupted prosperity of a being graced with no feature of a pure and good
will” (GMS 393).
45. This reading of “good will” would have to be broadened to accommodate Kant™s
view that perfectly rational beings such as God cannot act from duty. To them
the “ought” of duty does not apply, since their willing is necessarily in accord
with the law. See GMS 414. We might attribute to Kant the view that these beings
have a good will (engage in unconditionally good willing) just in case they act
“for the sake of the law.” Presumably such beings are capable of doing this. And
Kant does not seem averse to the idea that acting from duty is a species of acting
for the sake of the law.
46. See Karl Ameriks, “Kant on the Good Will,” in Grundlegung zur Metaphysik
der Sitten; Ein kooperativer Kommentar, ed. Otfried H¨ ffe (Frankfurt am Main:
o
Klostermann, 1989), 54“59.
47. See Christine M. Korsgaard, “Kant™s Analysis of Obligation: The Argument of
Groundwork I,” in Creating the Kingdom of Ends (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1996), 60“61.
48. I am here following Ameriks, “Kant on the Good Will,” 53.
49. Ibid., 51“54.
50. In focusing on the possibility of a value realist posing this sort of question, I am
following Gaut. See Berys Gaut, “The Structure of Practical Reason,” 176. I do
not wish to suggest that Gaut defends the environmentalist position I have men-
tioned. He does support a version of value realism but not environmentalism. In
The Sources of Normativity, Christine Korsgaard offers an argument against value
realism. I critically discuss this argument in “Korsgaard™s Kantian Arguments
for the Value of Humanity.” 44“51.
51. See Gaut, “The Structure of Practical Reason,” 167. My criticism of Kant™s claim
that nothing but the good will is good without quali¬cation is indebted to Gaut™s
treatment. See also H. J. Paton, The Categorical Imperative (New York: Harper &
Row, 1967), 38.
52. For a forceful challenge to Kant™s view that courage, cleverness, and knowledge
are not unconditionally good, see Gaut, “The Structure of Practical Reason,”
167“168.
Notes to pp. 72“77
206

53. This point derives from David Cummiskey, Kantian Consequentialism (New York:
Oxford University Press, 1996), chap. 5.


Chapter 4: The Derivation of the Formula of Universal Law:
A Criterial Reading
1. Parts of this chapter have been adapted from Berys Gaut and Samuel Kerstein,
“The Derivation without the Gap: Rethinking Groundwork I,” Kantian Review 3
(1999): 18“40.
2. Korsgaard™s reconstruction can be found in Christine M. Korsgaard, “Kant™s
Analysis of Obligation: The Argument of Groundwork I,” in Creating the Kingdom
of Ends (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 43“76. For evidence
that in Korsgaard™s view the derivation succeeds, see her last paragraph on
page 67.
3. The numbering of the steps here is not Korsgaard™s.
4. Korsgaard, “Kant™s Analysis,” 60 (emphasis omitted).
5. Ibid., 61.
6. Ibid.
7. Ibid., 63 (emphasis omitted).
8. Ibid. (emphasis omitted).
9. Ibid., 61“62.
10. Korsgaard in her interpretation appears to be trying to exploit some of the con-
siderations on which an account of autonomy might draw to make the derivation
work. But autonomy is not mentioned once in the derivation in Groundwork I.
Its deployment belongs to the second section of the Groundwork.
11. Korsgaard, “Kant™s Analysis,” 62.
12. There is an additional ground I have for rejecting the notion that the derivation
as interpreted by Korsgaard succeeds. Korsgaard endorses the view expressed
in step i, namely that the reason why a good-willed person does an action and
the reason why the action is right are the same. Here the assumption is that
if an action expresses good will, for example, if it is done from duty, then it is
right. But I will argue in Chapter 6 that, actually, Kant is rationally compelled
to acknowledge that an action can express good will even if it is not right.
13. Kant™s main task in Groundwork II also seems to be to derive the supreme prin-
ciple of morality “ in all the complexity of its various formulas. Of course, in
neither of the ¬rst two sections of the Groundwork does Kant claim to show that
there is a supreme principle of morality. For as he explicitly acknowledges he
has not there eliminated the possibility that our view that we are bound by moral

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