Axios Press's Essence of … series takes the greatest works ever written in the field of practical philosophy and pares them down to their essence. We select the best passages-the ones that are immediately relevant to us today, full of timeless wisdom and advice about the world and how best to live our lives-and leave behind the more obscure or less important bits. Our selections are not isolated: they flow together to create a seamless work that will capture your interest and attention from page one. And we provide useful notes and a solid introduction to the work.
One of the chief aims of Immanuel Kant was to refute the moral skepticism of British philosopher David Hume (1711-1776). He wanted to show that reason can give us moral and ethical principles on which to base our life and actions, principles that no one can doubt.
In Kant's view, we do not derive ethics from experience, which can vary from person to person, nor from our emotions. We derive it from a universal logic. Ethics are not relative nor changing nor variable according to circumstances. They are fixed and the same for everyone at all times.
Kant's argument is set out in this extraordinary little book, one of the most influential books of world history. By judicious cutting and editing the philosopher's own words, we have made it all perfectly understandable by everyone.
Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), a German who lived and taught in Königsberg, Prussia, is often considered the greatest Western philosopher. He exerted an immense influence on the intellectual movements of the 19th and 20th centuries.
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Table of Contents
Section I Transition to a Philosophy of Morals 17
Section II Transition from Popular Morals to a Philosophy of Morals 29
Section III Transition from the Metaphysics of Morals to the Critique of Pure Practical Reason 53