Skip to main content

Kant, Immanuel

  • 28 Accesses


Categorical imperative; Freedom; Goodwill; Moral realism; Practical reason; Universal law


Immanuel Kant, with his “brilliantly dry style” (Schopenhauer), expounds the notable theory that “objects are approaching to the mind” via the spectacle metaphor by addressing transcendental idealism in support of the mind as an active knower (mind-making nature), not passive in a realistic sense, while objects of knowledge conform to the mind begotten in categories of understanding. On Kant’s view, James Conant writes, “Kant’s term for this unity, considered at this level of abstraction, is the original synthetic unity of the understanding. This admits of forms of further determination, one sensible and one intellectual. This form of unity – categorial unity – characterizes both the manner in which objects are given to us in intuition and the manner in which concepts are combined in judgments” (Conant 2016: 114).

Insofar the same pioneering stance is reflected in the Groundwo...

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  • Beck LW (1988) Kant selections. Macmillan, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Buber M (2004) I and thou (trans: Smith RG). Continuum, London/New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Chakraborty S (2019) The fact/value dichotomy: revisiting Putnam and Habermas. Philosophia 47:369–386

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Conant J (2016) Why Kant is not a Kantian. Philosophical Topics 44(1):75–125

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Kant I (1898) On a supposed right to tell lies from benevolent motives. In: Abbott TK (trans) Kant’s critique of practical reason and other works on the theory of ethics. Longmans, Green and Co., London

    Google Scholar 

  • Kant I (1972) The moral law: Kant’s groundwork of the metaphysics of morals (trans: Paton HJ). Hutchinson University Library, London

    Google Scholar 

  • Kant I (1974) Anthropology from a pragmatic point of view (ed and trans: Gregor MJ). Martinus Nijhoff, The Hague

    Google Scholar 

  • Kant I (1996) Critique of practical reason. In: Gregor M (ed and trans). Cambridge University Press, New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Kant I (1998) Critique of pure reason (ed and trans: Guyer P, Wood AW), Cambridge University Press, London/Melbourne

    Google Scholar 

  • Korsgaard CM (1996) The sources of normativity. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • O’Neill O (2002) Kantian ethics. In: Singer P (ed) A companion to ethics. Blackwell Publishers, Oxford, UK, pp 175–185

    Google Scholar 

  • Parfit D (2011) In: Scheffler S (ed) On what matters, vol 1. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK/New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Potter N (1998) Kantianism. In: Chadwick R (ed) Encyclopedia of applied ethics, vol 3. Academic Press, San Diego/London, pp 31–38

    Google Scholar 

  • Ruse M (2021) A philosopher looks at human beings. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

  • Singer P (1997) How are we to live? Ethics in an age of self-interest. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK/New York

    Google Scholar 

  • Sorabji R (2014) Moral conscience through the ages: fifth century BCE to the present. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK

    CrossRef  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Sanjit Chakraborty .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Section Editor information

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2022 Springer Nature Switzerland AG

About this entry

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this entry

Chakraborty, S., Misra, S. (2022). Kant, Immanuel. In: Poff, D.C., Michalos, A.C. (eds) Encyclopedia of Business and Professional Ethics. Springer, Cham.

Download citation

  • DOI:

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Published:

  • Publisher Name: Springer, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-319-23514-1

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-319-23514-1

  • eBook Packages: Springer Reference Business and ManagementReference Module Humanities and Social Sciences