PHL217H1F Lecture Sep 19 th
Some background considerations
1.) An historically important text, but a minor in Kant’s corpus
- Cf. Critique of Pure Reason A738f/B766f
Reason has no dictatorial authority; reason has authority but not of a dictatorial kind. Its
claim is never more than the agreement of free citizens. Each of these free citizens must
be able to express his/her reservations without holding back.
POPULAR AND ACADEMIC PHILOSOPHY
- Distinction between a broader form of philosophy and a specialized
philosophy. It relates to Kant’s idea of the public use of reason.
FREEDOM OF BELIEF (CONSCIENCE) & FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION
- It is seen as wrong to persecute those who want to challenge an opinion.
Freedom of belief also requires freedom of expression; something which is
1.) Enlightenment as procedural
- There is no view that enlightenment ends with leading to a revelation.
2.) Enlightenment as individual
- Enlightenment is found in the individual; we often lack the courage to
reason for ourselves. The vices of truth are cowardice and laziness.
3.) From the private to the public pursuit of enlightenment
- It is almost inevitable that the public will enlighten itself. Every indivi