Expulsion from the Garden: The Transition to Humanity

Christine M. Korsgaard

in Self-Constitution

Published in print March 2009 | ISBN: 9780199552795
Published online September 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780191720550 | DOI:
 Expulsion from the Garden: The Transition to Humanity

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The previous chapter identified the distinctive feature of human agency that makes us subject to rational imperatives; this chapter identifies the source of that feature in the nature of human self-consciousness. The nature of instinct, emotion, intelligence, reason, and incentives are discussed, and the origin of reason in our consciousness of the grounds of our beliefs and actions is traced. Self-consciousness also separates off reason and inclination, creating parts in the human soul or psyche, which must then be reunified if we are to be able to function as unified agents. The work of practical deliberation is therefore identified with the work of reunification. In the course of reunifying ourselves and choosing the principles of our own causality, we constitute a new form of identify, personal or practical identity, which the other animals lack.

Keywords: deliberation; emotion; identity; incentive; inclination; instinct; intelligence; parts of the soul; reason; self-consciousness

Chapter.  11091 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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