A Funeral March for Those Drowning in Shallow Ponds? Imperfect Duties and Emergencies

Martin Sticker*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
31 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

I discuss the problem that Kant's ethics seems to be incapable of capturing our strong intuition that emergencies create a context for actions that is very different from other cases of helping and from other opportunities to further obligatory ends. I argue that if we pay attention to how Kant grounds beneficence we see that distress and emergency function as constitutive concerns. They are vital to establishing the duty of beneficence in the first place, and they also guide the application of duties to specific cases. Kant's conception of imperfect duties to others, when understood correctly, offers a way to understand why emergencies are morally important, but also why other factors have a place in our moral reasoning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)236-255
Number of pages20
JournalKant-Studien
Volume110
Issue number2
Early online date6 Jun 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2019

Keywords

  • Imperfect Duties
  • Beneficence
  • Emergency
  • Easy Rescue Cases

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