Edward Abbey and Kant

In: English and Literature

Submitted By jam396
Words 810
Pages 4
Kant doubted the work of past philosophers, presenting his limits of human reason in his book, The Critique of Pure Reason. He describes the confines of feeling and thinking something. Humans are held back by both space and time. Our own minds hold us back from being able to experience things completely. To think Kant assumed that there were 12 pure rational concepts split into four fields: quantity, quality, relation and modality. He believed that human reasoning connected those thoughts to everything. When Abbey refers to seeing certain aspects of the desert landscape in an Anti-Kantian manner, he wants the boundaries of human reason to be broken so that humans can experience the greatness of the landscape without having to be held back by the restrictions of human reason.
In the First Morning, Abbey begins to describe his “most beautiful place on Earth” (Abbey, Desert Solitaire A Season in the Wilderness , 1971) the first two pages of the initial chapters focuses upon the description of the desert landscape. His perspective on the desert prevents readers from coming to their own conclusions, again showing the limitations of human reason.
Kant also believed that certain actions like murder, theft and lying should be strongly prohibited. In The Critique of Pure Reason, Kant says “He who is cruel to animals becomes hard also in his dealings with men. We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals”. Abbey however in chapter, Abbey willingly kills the innocent rabbit and has no problem with it. This goes to show how anti-kantian Abbey’s ways are and puts emphasis on Abbey as a person.
Contrary to many critiques of author’s goal Abbey made his intention in writing Desert Solitaire quite clear in his Introduction. He says: "Do not jump into your automobile next June and rush out ... to see some of that which I have attempted to evoke ...Most of what I…...

Similar Documents


...“Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals”, argues upon the basis of morality introducing the ideals of the categorical imperative as the central concept of moral philosophy. The definition of the categorical imperative leads Kant towards the critique of pure reason arguing that without a goodwill one can’t even be worthy of being happy. Kant introduces goodwill, treating people as means rather than ends and doing the right thing for the right reason. Making a distinction between science and knowledge and eliminating common sense on a route to the philosophical, Kant defines reason as reason a practical faculty to influence will and also being essential to will. Kant argument in the Groundwork focuses upon the basic idea of what makes a good person good. It is the possession of a will that is a way determined by, or makes decision based of moral law. This goodwill is supposed to be the idea of one who only makes decisions that she holds to be morally worthy, taking moral considerations in themselves to be conclusive reasons for guiding her behavior. This sort of disposition or character is something we all highly value. Kant believes we value it without limitation or qualification. Formulated by pure reason, the categorical imperative according to Kant underscores his argument. The value of a good will thus cannot be that it secures certain valuable ends, whether of our own or of others, since there value is entirely conditional on our having and maintaining a good......

Words: 597 - Pages: 3

Immanuel Kant

...Eric Melino Professor Ndovie PHI 101 3/7/13 Immanuel Kant was a German philosopher born in 1724 in Königsberg, Prussia. Kant was a solid albeit unspectacular, student. He was brought up in a Pietist household that stressed education that preferred Latin and religious instruction instead of mathematics and science. Kant lived a predictable life. He never married. Kant was a popular teacher and a modestly successful author before starting on his major philosophical works. He studied at the University of Königsberg. He is best known for his work in philosophy of ethics and metaphysics. Immanuel Kant “rejected the empiricists blank slate hypothesis on the grounds that the mind was not simply a passive receptacle of neutral sense data (Palmer 102).” He replaced some of these ideas with categories, which were formal and active features of the mind. Kant’s model of the mind can be broken down into three categories: the mind is complex set of abilities, the functions crucial for mental, knowledge-generating activity, and these functions called synthesis. “Kant held surprisingly strong and not entirely consistent views on the empirical study of the mind. The empirical method for doing psychology that Kant discussed was introspection (Brook).” Kant’s synthesis is broken down into three parts: apprehending in intuition, reproducing in imagination, and recognizing in concepts. Each of these three concepts relates to a different aspect of fundamental duality of......

Words: 635 - Pages: 3


...treating each other the way they would want to be treated which is known as the “Golden Rule”. In this article respect with regards to Kant’s theory takes respect from a casual exchange such as a polite “ excuse me” or “ thank you” to the very intents of the heart of persons in any exchange. The core argument in this case is the subject matter of whether or not companies treat their employees as a means to their end or if companies treat employees as an end in and of themselves. Most business’s look at their employees as resources used to accomplish task needed to generate revenues for the company‘s stockholders. In order to understand the issue Kantians have with this business viewpoint one must first understand what Kant considers respect. According to Kant human beings have dignity which cannot be bought. He also believes that human beings are not exchangeable. Kant’s second formulation of the categorical imperative says “Act so that you treat humanity whether, in your own person or in that of another, always as an end and never as a means only. (Norman E. Bowie “Business Ethics” pg. 67-68) His views regarding human dignity poses a threat to the way businesses operate because from a business standpoint, machinery and humans are one in the same and whichever can meet the objectives of the company more efficiently the company will choose. In this article, Bowie brought forth several points of view in an effort to pin point whether there is a problem with the way......

Words: 390 - Pages: 2

Abbey Winery

...Arkansas State University | Freemark Abbey Winery | Team 1 | | Assignment | 11/28/2012 | | Case Summary Freemark Abbey Winery should make a decision whether to harvest or not, taking into consideration the possibility of rain. Rain may damage the crop but delaying the harvest would be risky too. Keeping in mind rain could be beneficial and will increase the value of the resulting wine. This decision is complicated by the fact that ripe Riesling grapes can be converted to wine in two ways, resulting in two different types of wine. Factors that should be taken into consideration Probability of rain, mold formation, acidity, sugar level, wine price, and reputation. Mr. Jaeger’s possible choices: Harvest now or later. Solution: The payoffs are calculated based on 1000 cases of wine. 1. There are two alternatives: * Waiting (W) for the storm to come. * Harvest (H) now. * If he waited, the storm may or may not hit. * If the storm hits, the mold may or may not form, which greatly affect the revenue. * If the storm hits and no mold form, the sugar level which determines the quality of the wine is uncertain. The quality of wine produced affects the company’s reputation. * If storm hits and mold do not form: Sell the grapes in bulk (B), or make the thin (light) wine and sell it (T). * The best decision: Where the expected value (EV) maximizes current returns. * The blue values represent selling the harvest in bulk......

Words: 530 - Pages: 3


...November 7, 2013 PHI 105 Reading Response #4 Kant In Immanuel Kant’s The Grounding for the Metaphysics of Morals, deontological or the right/logical thing to do is laid out through different categorical imperatives. Kant believes logically there is always a right thing to do. There are obligations that must be done without looking at consequences and only looking at that specific moment in time to decide whether or not good motivations are being practiced. I think that acting in the right way at one moment in time is difficult to achieve without looking at consequences, the end result should be taken into account otherwise people could be making vital mistakes in their life. Kant states that every person has a duty and that your responsibilities cannot look at the consequences, you must only act on the right thing to do first. In class we discussed the idea of euthanasia, for example if someone asks you to mercy kill them then technically that would be your new duty, at least in the eyes of Kant. You cannot think whether or not this will ease them of their pain and end their life, this would be looking at the consequences. According to Kant, if someone asks you to do something and you agree to it that is now something you must uphold to. This is clearly an example of not looking at the consequences, but I think the end result should be taken into account here. Living in that moment and performing mercy killing would have a terrible end result, there are so many other......

Words: 599 - Pages: 3


...looks only into what SHOULD be done regardless of the consequences. Do the right thing even if this causes unhappiness - even if the heavens fall, to paraphrase a classical saying. This might not strike you as sensible: Why should we not care if our actions, to be morally appropriate, should have the right kinds of effects on other people? But, not be so fast. Many people who never read - or would like to read or would be able to understand - Kant, think of morality in the same way. Consider this example: If someone tries to do something nice for you but messes up and causes trouble, you cannot, in good faith, blame him. Assuming that he meant well, his good intention must surely count, morally speaking. If the outcome could not have been predicted, for instance, then, the fact that the outcome was not to your benefit should not affect your judgment of his action: He did mean well, after all. Isnt't a good intention all that counts when it comes to praising and blaming moral agents? Another way of putting the above point is this: Kant asks a basic moral-philosophical question: Shouldn't ethics be dealing with what is morally good? Of course, it should. Now, what is morally good in the universe? Can you name something that is morally good in the whole universe,no matter where you find it? If we find this morally good thing, then, for starters, we know that a morally good action must have something to do with this morally good thing. But, there is a catch: The morally good......

Words: 2496 - Pages: 10


...reason. It is important to note that Kant began a new way of looking at knowledge. He believed that we could know the world through reason in a prior synthetic way. This was a complete change from how the world had been view previously and was known as Kant’s Copernican revolution. In essence Kant believed in two separate worlds of knowledge: noumenal and the phenomenal worlds. The noumenal world is the world as it truly is without being observed. It is fundamentally unknowable because the act of observation changes the very thing that we observe. It is as though human beings have a specific set of spectacles that cannot be taken off and like the proverbial rose tinted ones they change our perception of the world around us. This personalised view of the universe is the phenomenal world. However, what is key to explaining Kant’s moral argument is the fact that reason is the tool that can be used to know the true nature of the universe as it does not and cannot change. Kant’s moral argument focuses on reason, good will, duty and the notion that we ought to strive towards moral perfection. It begins with the claim of two things that have him in awe: the starry heavens above; and the moral law within. This moral law for Kant was universal and objective. An example of this might be seen in the wide scale agreement that murder or torture is wrong. There seems to be agreement across cultures that certain actions are intrinsically wrong. This, for Kant, suggests that there is a......

Words: 2616 - Pages: 11


...We tend to make flawed judgements both intentionally and unintentionally in our lives that we later regret and may even come to realization that they were morally incorrect. In order for us to make moral judgments upon our actions, Immanuel Kant provides a guideline for which actions are morally commendable in his text, “Groundwork of the Metaphysic of Morals”. He believes that an action is morally right when it is motivated by duty alone. Kant introduces the concept of rational beings, in which he defines it as beings with the capacity to act in accordance with the representations of laws or a will (4:412). According to Kant, we are considered to be imperfect rational beings, in which our rational capacities are influenced by various incentives, and therefore, we must be governed by a moral command that will tell us how to act accordingly with the law. In a broad sense, the law is equally valid for all rational beings, and ought to follow is what Kant refers to as the “moral law” (4:227). And the moral command can exist in two forms, either hypothetical or categorical, but only one of which is ideal for the purpose of the moral (4:412). Hypothetical imperative tells us to exercise our wills in respect of our desire for personal ends, and it follows a form: “if you want achieve a goal A, you ought to do B”. For instance, if you want to pass the chemistry exam, then you ought to study for it. Although hypothetical imperative can be universally valid, it cannot be a moral...

Words: 1213 - Pages: 5

Freemark Abbey

...harvest is more likely to produce rain-soaked berries, yielding a thin wine that would sell wholesale for only about $2.00 per bottle and costing Freemark Abbey Winery its reputation. It could sell the wine in bulk or sell the grapes directly to preserve its reputation but these options would bring only half as much revenue, which is the second decision problem. Hence, Freemark Abbey Winery might be better off harvesting immediately before the storm and eliminating the risk of the rain spoiling the grapes. The not-so-ripe grapes could yield wine that sells for $2.85 per bottle. If Jaeger decided to harvest later and the storm did not strike, there is a high chance that the acidity of the grapes would not fall below about 0.7 percent. In this case, the resulting wines would still sell at a higher price than wine produced from the not-so-ripe grapes harvested now, regardless of what the weather condition is like. However, there is a slight chance that the acidity of the of the grapes would drop below about 0.7, in which case the resulting wine would sell at a slightly lower price of $2.50 per bottle. To make this decision, a decision tree, Michael Porters (1997) five forces analysis, and SWOT analysis are used to aid in the decision making process. Both five forces analysis and SWOT analysis reveal that Freemark Abbey Winery should pursue a differentiation strategy. The bargaining power of customers for small wineries is lower than that for mid-size wineries. Small......

Words: 486 - Pages: 2


...Freedom to Kant did not consist in not being bound by law, but more so by laws that one creates for him or herself. This is known as autonomy, which can be defined as how people self-govern themselves. In the end, being free really consists of a person doing whatever it is that the person wants to do based on his or her own choices for oneself. While being autonomous is the positive way to be free, the negative way to be free consists of following rules of a source outside of oneself. It cannot be considered “freedom” if someone else is making the rules for you. A state with a government gives its people this sense of “freedom” by binding its citizens with laws that are created and ratified by representatives that are elected so that the people feel like the rules made are in some sort of way made by them. In this case, the people oblige to all the laws because they think they are right when the officials voted into office come up with them, even if the people do not know all the details, benefits, or even the negative effects of the laws. In a real sense of freedom, not only would the elected politicians have a say, but the people would have a major say as well. People should be able to express themselves, especially in the case of creating laws in which they are to abide by. Most people may start out in the negative sense of freedom then soon convert into the positive sense when they realize that they are humans with the ability to make their own decisions. In the......

Words: 1102 - Pages: 5

Edward Snowden

...1. Do you think that Kant would approve of Snowden’s decision to leak the NSA confidential material? Explain your answer including specific details from Kant’s deontology, why/why not? No, I do not believe Mr. Kant would agree with Mr. Snowden’s decision. If Mr. Snowden wanted to warn the American people as he claims, he could have done so without putting the entire country at risk. Mr. Snowden cannot articulate a duty towards his fellow American and put them at risk at the same time. He can argue that he wanted to change the law however he could have release the information to the media here in the states instead of flee to a another country then release the information. Snowden argument fails to prove to the American people that all of his actions were merely “matter of principle” as he claims. 2. Explain whether or not you believe Edward Snowden should be hailed as a hero. Support your statements by explaining the rationale for your decision. That is a double-edged sword question because if he was from another country and divulge national secrets that could potentially help the U.S. to protect it from terrorist attacks then we would probably hail him a hero. However, his leaks have led to a more open debate and more democratic process than would not have existed otherwise. So what makes us different from other countries? One is the way we openly discuss and democratically process the laws. Two: The ways the U.S. protect and secure the nation. Mr. Snowden’s......

Words: 487 - Pages: 2


... Immanuel Kant Life 1. Immanuel Kant lived all his 80 years (1724- 1804) in the small provincial town of Königsberg in East Prussia. His parents belonged to the religious sect known as Pietists. His religious upbringing influenced his life and philosophy. 2. Kant entered the University of Königsberg were he studied the classics, physics, and philosophy. a. He was impressed by the advancements in learning made by science, particularly that of Newton. b. The dominant philosophy being taught at the University was Continental Rationalism, particularly that of Leibniz. 3. Kant’s life was remarkably unremarkable. He traveled little, and he had no notable political connections. He was known most for his meticulous, if not eccentric, behavior. Nevertheless, he was also known for being a brilliant thinker, writer, and lecturer. His most important writings include: Critique of Pure Reason, Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics, Principles of Metaphysics and Morals, Metaphysical First Principles of Natural Science, Critique of Practical Reason, Critique of Judgment, Religion within the Limits of Pure Reason, and Perpetual Peace. A. The Shaping of Kant’s Problem 1. The major philosophical systems of his time, Rationalism and Empiricism, seemed to Kant inadequate to explain the two major issues which he articulated in his famous statement: “Two things fill the mind with ever new and increasing......

Words: 4837 - Pages: 20

Kant and Deleuze

...Thinking between Deleuze and Kant: a straneg encounter; Eds. Edward Willat Matt Lee continuum 2009 NY 04 For Deleuze it seems that we need a transcendental empiricism so that the forces immanent in sensation produce individuation; we need mechanisms that ensure that individuation is the result of the work of forces. In other words thought is never to lose sight of the individual because the individual is the ever developing outcome of forces rather than being swept away by them. 08 What sensation can do. 08 Deleuze avoids the language of Kantian faculties that has been present in a number of his earlier solo works. Instead they develop a materialism that is characterized as transcendental in terms of Machinic operations rather than the work of faculties. This provides a reading or appropriation of Kant that places the transcendental further from consciousness and closer to matter. All hint of the psychologism that had characterized Kant’s three syntheses is radicaly blown away by the terminology of desiring machines. D&G talk of machines in anti Oedipus as an attempt to focus upon use and function so as to evacuate all reference to meaning and hence to conscious life. Undermine the hold of consciousness upon the conditions of thought. 69 (how do we recognize structuralism?) it moves away from an understanding of structure as being developed through its own relations, things already given or secured. It thus moves away from a concern with “arriving at secure......

Words: 301 - Pages: 2

Freemark Abbey

...Decision Analysis DISC 321 Case 2 Group 3 Hafsa Siddique 17110055 Faisal Ali 17110282 Aleem ud din Khan 17110267 Hassaan Butt 17110117 We first divided the mess being analyzed into a clear, structured problem statement as follows Objective: To decide if Freemark Abbey Winery should harvest the Riesling grapes immediately or leave them on the vines despite the approaching storm. Assumptions: 1-We assumed that the list of possibilities provided is mutually exclusive as well as exhaustive. This means that either one has to occur, as well as no other possible option exists. 2-The payoffs are calculated based on 1000 cases of wine. 3-The given probabilities accurately reflect reality Analysis: At the moment Freemark Abbey Winery has two alternatives: to harvest or not to harvest. If they choose not to harvest there is 50% chance that storm might hit. And if the storm hits there is a probability of 40% that Botryis mold will form which will significantly affect the revenue. Freemark Abbey Winery faces another decision if the storm hits and Botryis mold will not form, because if Botryis mold will not form the sugar level which determines the quality of wine and revenue will be different, so the decision that they faces is that whether to sell the grapes in bulk or to make and sell the wine themselves. If the storm hits and mold is formed then the revenue will be 67,200 but the chance of this happening is only 40%. As compared to this there is a 60% chance that......

Words: 576 - Pages: 3


...Amy Vu Philosophy 205 May 14, 2016 Essay Assignment Kant Kant was one of the most influential philosophers in Western philosophy. His works contributed in whether or not we call any philosophy based on experience empirical, if we call it pure philosophy if it sets its principles based on priori principles, or any form of pure philosophy that is formal, logic. However, if logic were known to be only in specific objects of understanding this pure philosophy would be called metaphysics. He based a large amount of his writing on the question, “What can we know?” and through that, he stated, “our knowledge is constrained to mathematics and the science of the natural empirical world. It is impossible, Kant argues, to extend knowledge to the supersensible realm of speculative metaphysics” (McCormick). He believes that the mind is limiting us to only the empirical realm of space and time. In Kant’s view in ethnics, he states that the sole reason that gives the action moral worth is not actually the outcome once achieved but it is the motive behind the action. He argues that the mind is a blank slate that we would write our experience by experiencing the empirical world. That motive which causes that action arises from the universal principles of reason. Kant claims that only actins done from duty have moral worth, which is true because in his writings, morality is something that only rational beings are able to preform these principles because they are rational. “Everything in......

Words: 1733 - Pages: 7

HD Lời Th Thầm Dẫn Lối 속닥속닥 2018 | Eat In Style | والدبابات