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  1. suprunp's Avatar
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    #1

    the imperative of the category of action

    And remember: Whatever this librarian does in this case is going to set the standard for every librarian for all time. That's the imperative of the category of action she is creating.
    (How Good People Make Tough Choices; R. M. Kidder)

    Would you be so kind as to tell me whether she is creating 'the imperative' (as in Kant's 'categorical imperative')?

    Thanks.

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: the imperative of the category of action

    I'd say not, because in Kant's CI, every thinking person should be able to understand the imperative, and "make it" themselves. You can't make a CI for someone else. That would be to undermine his important emphasis on autonomy.

    Having said that, the author might be making an illusion to Kant. But it seems to mean here that the librarian is setting an exemplary standard.

  3. suprunp's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: the imperative of the category of action

    Thank you Raymott!

    But what is she creating then, 'the category of action'?

    Thanks.

  4. Raymott's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: the imperative of the category of action

    I'm not sure that she can create a category of action. It doesn't make a lot of sense.
    In Kant's categorical imperative, 'categorical' means "without exceptions or conditions; absolute; unqualified and unconditional"
    http://www.dictionary.com/browse/categorical

    But a category (or type) of action doesn't have that meaning. The author is equivocating on category/categorical.
    Is it impossible that R. M. Kidder is confused, and that s/he is just saying "Whatever actions this librarian institutes become mandatory?" I'd forget Kant (and usually try to!)

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