Outline and evaluate kants categorical imprative

The categorical imperative comes in two versions which each emphasise different aspects of the categorical imperative.

Outline and evaluate kants categorical imprative

His categorical imperative is a deontological ethical theory, which means it is based on the idea that there are certain objective ethical rules in the world.

Kantianism focuses more on intent and action in itself, as opposed to the consequentialist focus of utilitarianism. Now, Kant was pretty big on something known as autonomy self-governance.


He believed that, unless a person freely and willingly makes a choice, their action has no meaning and certainly no moral value — this would be an example of what Kant called heteronomy. So how did he move from this to the concept of a universal, objective moral law that no man had the right to break?

Kant thought that every man, if using reason when looking at moral dilemmas, would agree with what he called the Categorical Imperative the CI. So, while the law is objective, Kant thought that all people could come to understand and agree with it after autonomous reflection. So how, exactly, does the CI tell us how to act?

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How does it work? The decision-making procedure of the theory is actually quite straight forward, and one that many people should be able to grasp intuitively which is exactly what Kant wanted to achieve.

Is this universalization possible? Because of this logical contradiction, Kant felt that we have a perfect duty to not kill people. However, are also imperfect duties.

Outline and evaluate kants categorical imprative

An example of this would be giving to charity — it is not a moral necessity that you do this, but you should be praised if you do. A core aspect of this theory is the concept of intent.

It was the intent that mattered to him. You have a knife in your pocket. It would be easy for you to kill him. In the end, you do not kill. One of the advantages of this approach to morality is that it looks more closely at the individual and his choices, rather than the actual consequences of what he does which, after all, he has no control over.

Take this example; a scientist decides that he is going to find a cure for a particular sort of cancer, and spends years trying to accomplish this.

Categorical Imperative

But imagine that he accidentally invents some sort of super weapon instead, which eventually leads to the total destruction of entire civilizations. This is not a positive result, but it was not what he wanted to achieve.

The utilitarian would say that he is a bad person nevertheless, as he has caused massive amounts of suffering.outline and evaluate kants categorical imprative Essay Kants categorical imperative (25 marks) Kant’s categorical ethics is a deontological theory of ethics, this means that the actions are either intrinsically right or intrinsically wrong, this is due to absolute law; the outcome of the situation is not important to Kant’s theory even.

KANT'S LYING PROMISE EXAMPLE - Willing a Universal Law Form. Willing a Universal Law Form of the Categorical Imperative: "Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law. (Kant in Solomon and Martin, and in Solomon and Greene, ).". How to Evaluate Kant's Ethical Theory By Meredyth Glass eHow Contributor Immanuel Kant's () ethical theory, the Categorical Imperative, states that moral acts are those done out of universally understood duty rather than out of concern for consequences.

Outline and evaluate kants categorical imprative

Evaluation of his theory requires careful examination of each element . The categorical imperative therefore gives us the ability to decide if an action is a moral or immoral one, in that it tells us to make our decisions not on our desires or expected outcomes, which would be hypothetical, but by making a decision which is the right, moral or categorical imperative (Smith, ).

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Oct 02,  · Kant's version of duty-based ethics was based on something that he called 'the categorical imperative' which he intended to be the basis of all other rules (a 'categorical imperative.

The categorical imperative has three different formulations. That is to say, there are three different ways of saying what it is.

Kant claims that all three do in fact say the same thing, but it is currently disputed whether this is true.

Kant's Moral Philosophy (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)