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Vol 23 No 3 March/April 2018

Book of the Month

Cover of Scamell and Gasztowicz on Land Covenants

Scamell and Gasztowicz on Land Covenants

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Constructing Authorities: Reason, Politics and Interpretation in Kant's Philosophy

ISBN13: 9781107116313
Published: January 2016
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Hardback
Price: £59.99
Paperback edition , ISBN13 9781107538252

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This collection of essays brings together the central lines of thought in Onora O'Neill's work on Kant's philosophy, developed over many years.

Challenging the claim that Kant's attempt to provide a critique of reason fails because it collapses into a dogmatic argument from authority, O'Neill shows why Kant held that we must construct, rather than assume, the authority of reason, and how this can be done by ensuring that anything we offer as reasons can be followed by others, including others with whom we disagree.

She argues that this constructivist view of reasoning is the clue to Kant's claims about knowledge, ethics and politics, as well as to his distinctive accounts of autonomy, the social contract, cosmopolitan justice and scriptural interpretation.

Her essays are a distinctive and illuminating commentary on Kant's fundamental philosophical strategy and its implications, and will be a vital resource for scholars of Kant, ethics and philosophy of law.

Part I. Authority in Reasoning
1. Vindicating reason
2. Kant: rationality as practical reason
3. Kant's conception of public reason
4. Constructivism in Rawls and Kant
5. Changing constructions
Part II. Authority, Autonomy and Public Reason
6. Autonomy: the emperor's new clothes
7. Self-legislation, autonomy and the form of law
8. Autonomy and public reason in Kant, Habermas and Rawls
Part III. Authority in Politics
9. Orientation in thinking: geographical problems, political solutions
10. Kant and the social contract tradition
11. Historical trends and human futures
12. Cosmopolitanism then and now
Part IV. Authority in Interpretation
13. Kant on reason and religion I: reasoned hope
14. Kant on reason and religion II: reason and interpretation