Rationality as Practical Reason
O'Neill's central concern here is to explicate Kant's account of how we could have unconditional practical reasons to do as morality requires, where unconditional practical reasons are those not based upon arbitrarily chosen ends. But then, what is their basis? Kant's proposal, O'Neill argues, is that what makes a practical reason unconditional is its universal recognizability. An unconditional practical reason is one that can be seen to be a reason for action by any rational audience; its appeal relies on no parochial concerns. Such universal appeal is captured by the categorical imperative test (O'Neill examines in detail three of the formulations of this): only principles of action that pass this test can be universally recognized as yielding practical reasons.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.