Monday, October 05, 2009

And then there is Hegel.

It is Kant who made really bad writing philosophically acceptable. We can no longer show other people some atrocious paragraph, and say ‘How can it be worth reading anyone who writes like this?’ The answer could always be ‘What about Kant?'
-- Derek Parfit, "Preface" to On What Matters, p. 8.

Making my way through the first Critique for the first time since grad school, I am reassured that so accomplished a philosopher as Parfit agrees.

... On What Matters is a draft work posted for internet critique. The preface is a charming account of Parfit's admiration for his "two masters," Sidgwick and Kant. One sometimes sees a reprint of Sidgwick's Methods of Ethics; I shall have to pick one up sometime.

(H/t John S.)

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