It's all you: From the self to the ideals of self-improvement and autonomy
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This thesis delves into Kant's conception of the self. Kant conceives of the self as a dual being, split between its transcendental existence and its empirical existence. In the first chapter we work out the role of this pair of concepts in the Kantian system, both in the moral domain and in the theoretical domain. In the second chapter we argue that this pair of concepts can help us incorporate the concept of virtue into the Kantian scheme. The moral nature of virtue is then argued to be our specific responsibility for how we ourselves end up being. In chapter three of the thesis, we discuss a number of neo-Kantians (Korsgaard and O'Neill) which take a more deflationary stance to the Kantian moral program than Kant himself. We will argue that the hypostization of the transcendental aspects of the self, including the assertion of our transcendental freedom is not merely superfluous. In the final chapter of the thesis, we discuss a number of ways we might go about the breeding of virtue, i.e. it focusses on self-improvement.