Ronald Green on Stephen Palmquist’s “Comprehensive Commentary on Kant’s «Religion»”

 

STEPHEN PALMQUIST | Comprehensive Commentary on Kant’s Religion within the Bounds of Bare Reason | Wiley-Blackwell 2015 


 

By Ronald M. Green

Stephen Palmquist’s Comprehensive Commentary on Kant’s Religion within the Bounds of Bare Reason is a rich and erudite work of scholarship. Above all, it displays intellectual generosity in its effort to try to understand what Kant was trying to say in this his culminating work of his moral and religious philosophy. If I sometimes disagree with Palmquist or criticise his interpretation in what follows, this should not obscure the fact that I have learned a vast amount from Palmquist’s remarkable book. My focus will be on Kant’s treatment of radical evil in the First Piece or First Part of the Religion. I would like to suggest that while Palmquist offers a way of elucidating and validating Kant’s argument for the human universality of radical evil, his argument is not as incisive as it might be and may even be erroneous.

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Reply to Allen Wood

 

LAWRENCE PASTERNACK | Guidebook to Kant on Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason | Routledge 2014


 

By Lawrence Pasternack

Let me begin by expressing my gratitude to Allen Wood for his lengthy comments (here and here). While Wood frequently remarks (especially early on in his comments) that we are in general agreement about the Religion, as he moves forward, more disagreements arise. With some of these disagreements, Wood and I simply come down on different sides of an issue. However, with other points of disagreement, I fear that he sometimes misconstrued my views. As the author, I have to take some responsibility for these misunderstandings and so I hope through these comments, my arguments and analyses will become all the more clear. I am thus appreciative of this opportunity for exchange and hope that it will further our collective understanding of the Pure Rational System of Religion. Read more

Allen Wood on Lawrence Pasternack’s “Kant on Religion”, Part B

 

LAWRENCE PASTERNACK | Guidebook to Kant on Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason | Routledge 2014


 

By Allen Wood

Appendix: Kant on Judaism, or, Kant and Mendelssohn

This essay is already longer than it is supposed to be, even though I have tried to keep it short by limiting myself to Pasternack’s treatment only of the first two parts of the Religion (see Part A). But on further reflection, I feel that I must comment at least briefly on the Kantian texts that, according to Pasternack, must to a contemporary reader “reek of anti-Semitism” (p. 197). Pasternack himself, to his credit, does not accept this harsh verdict. But I do not think that he sees—or that most readers of the Religion are likely to see—what is really going on in the very passage (AA 6:124–8) that provokes this wildly unfair response. Read more

Allen Wood on Lawrence Pasternack’s “Kant on Religion”, Part A

 

LAWRENCE PASTERNACK | Guidebook to Kant on Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason | Routledge 2014


 

By Allen Wood

Pasternack’s Guidebook is a section-by-section commentary on Kant’s Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason. It sheds light on many dark corners of one of Kant’s more difficult texts. Its strength is that it provides for each part of it a thoughtful and informed discussion with which a reader of Kant’s Religion can compare his or her own readings and reactions. Pasternack avoids many (if not all) of the errors common to readers of the Religion; he offers a refreshing new approach to many topics. His reading of the Religion attempts to see Kant within the context of Christian theology—more specifically, the orthodox Lutheranism of Kant’s own time and place. Read more