Kant is widely acknowledged for his critique of theoretical reason, his universalistic ethics, and his aesthetics. Scholars, however, often ignore his achievements in the philosophy of law and government. At least four innovations that are still relevant today can be attributed to Kant. He is the first thinker, and to date the only great thinker, to have elevated the concept of peace to the status of a foundational concept of philosophy. Kant links this concept to the political innovation of his time, a republic devoted to human rights. He extends the concept by adding to it the right of nations and cosmopolitan law. Finally, Kant democratizes Plato's notion of philosopher kings with a concept of 'kingly people'. This book examines all aspects of this important, but neglected, body of Kant's writings.
Otfried Hoeffe is professor of philosophy at Eberhard-Karls-University, Tubingen and Director of the Research Center for Political Philosophy. He is a Fellow of the Heidlberger Akademie der Wissenschaften and Member of the Collegium Europeanum Jenense. In 2002 he received the Karl-Vossler-Preis of the Bavarian Ministry for Science and Culture. He is the author of many books, most recently Gerechtigkeit. Eine philosophische Einfuhrung, Medizin ohne Ethic? and Kant's Kritk der reinen Vernunft and sits on the editorial boards of many scholarly journals.
Preface; Part I. Morals: 1. Kant's challenge and relevance today; 2. Aristotle instead of Kant?; 3. Universalistic ethics and the faculty of judgment; 4. On evil; Part II. Right and Morals: 5. Kant's more nuanced approach; 6. The moral concept of right and law; 7. Categorical imperatives of right according to Ulpian; Part III. Legal Morals and Peace: 8. The neglected ideal; 9. The Idea: the progress of law; 10 Peace I: are Republics peaceable?; 11. Peace II: federation of peoples or world republic?; 12. The Critique of Pure Reason: a cosmo-political reading.