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Kant's Theory of Action$
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Richard McCarty

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199567720

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199567720.001.0001

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Character from Two Standpoints

Character from Two Standpoints

(p.131) 5 Character from Two Standpoints
Kant's Theory of Action

Richard McCarty

Oxford University Press

“Two-standpoints” interpretations of Kant's metaphysics are popular alternatives to the “two-worlds” interpretation presented in Chapter 4. But they are unfaithful to Kant's thoughts on the transcendental distinction between appearances (“phenomena”) and things in themselves (“noumena”), and they are unfruitful for solving the problem of justification and explanation. The “empirical character” of each human being is constituted by the causal laws (“maxims”) explaining his or her actions in the sensible world. It is the appearance of an “intelligible character”, traceable to a free action in the intelligible world. Kant used the language of “standpoints” in referring to actions' sensible and intelligible causes; but not as this language is used in two-standpoints interpretations of his distinction between appearances and things in themselves.

Keywords:   worlds, appearances, things in themselves, empirical character, intelligible character

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