Thursday, March 27, 2014

"The Americans" and the categorical imperative

"Act so that you treat humanity, whether in your own person or in that of another, always as an end and never as a means only." So wrote Kant. The "in your own person" part is the stinger: morality requires personal integrity as well as other-regarding behavior-- to thine own self be true is a moral imperative, not just good therapy. "The Americans" is not quite in the same league as the classic le Carré spy novels, but it shares their moral terrain, grounded in Kant's imperative. Nobody, but nobody, lives up to its demands... but can some do a little better than others?

No comments:

Post a Comment