2020 | 17 | 65 | 1-11
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Kant on the Relations between Church and State: An Introduction to the Special Edition

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This introduction is divided into two parts. First, drawing on Paul Guyer’s suggestion that we should turn to Kant to reinvestigate the foundations of religious liberty, I outline Kant’s views on the relations between the ethical (‘church’) and the political (‘state’) community, as presented in Part Three of the Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason, focusing in particular on his arguments for separation between religion and the state. Examining critically the idea to employ Kant in contemporary debates, I claim that Kant’s account of pure moral faith and the church as its ‘vehicle’ may pose difficulties for any argument for religious liberty that appeals to his thought. For Kant is better equipped to offer resources to overcome rather than to accommodate the fact of so-called “moral pluralism,” i.e. the condition in which the principle of religious liberty can find its application. In the second part, I summarise the arguments of the authors who contribute to this volume: D. Jakušić, W. Kozyra, S. Lo Re, G.E. Michalson Jr., and S.R. Palmquist.
Physical description
  • Jagiellonian University
  • In this volume, Kant’s works are cited on the basis of the German Academy Edition in the following way: siglum, volume and page number. All sigla used here conform to the indications of the German Kant Society, specified in the website: [Accessed on 18 September 2020]. The lists of references inform about the translations of Kant’s works into English that each author refers to.
  • Bhargava R. (2016), “Is European Secularism Secular Enough?,” [in:] Religion, Secularism, and Constitutional Democracy, J.L. Cohen, C. Laborde (eds.), Columbia University Press, New York: 157–181.
  • Demiray M.R. (2017), “Public Religion & Secular State: A Kantian Approach,” Diametros 54: 30–55.
  • DiCenso J.J. (2011), Kant, Religion, and Politics, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2011.
  • Dörflinger B. (2012), “Kant über das Ende der historischen Religionen,” [in:] Kant und die Religion – Die Religionen und Kant, R. Hiltscher, S. Klingner (eds.), Georg Olms Vg., Hildesheim, Zürich, New York: 159–175.
  • Firestone Ch.L. (2009), Kant and Theology at the Boundaries of Reason, Ashgate Publishing Ltd., Farnham.
  • Firestone Ch.L., Jacobs N. (2008), In Defense of Kant’s Religion, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, Indianapolis.
  • Guyer P. (2018), “Mendelssohn, Kant, and Religious Liberty,” Kant-Studien 109 (2): 309–328.
  • Hunter I. (2005), “Kant’s Religion and Prussian Religious Policy,” Modern Intellectual History 2 (1): 1–27.
  • Kant I. (1788/1996), Critique of Practical Reason, trans. M.J. Gregor, [in:] I. Kant, Practical Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, New York: 133–271.
  • Kant I. (1797/1996), The Metaphysics of Morals, trans. M.J. Gregor, [in:] I. Kant, Practical Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, New York: 353–603.
  • Kant I. (1793/1996), Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason, trans. A.W. Wood, G. di Giovanni, [in:] I. Kant, Religion and Rational Theology, Cambridge University Press, New York: 39–215.
  • Kant I. (1794/1996), The End of All Things, trans. A.W. Wood, [in:] I. Kant, Religion and Rational Theology, Cambridge University Press, New York: 217–231.
  • Kant I. (1798/1996), The Conflict of the Faculties, trans. M.J. Gregor, R. Anchor, [in:] I. Kant, Religion and Rational Theology, Cambridge University Press, New York: 233–327.
  • Maclure J. (2017), “Towards a Political Theory of Secularism,” [in:] The Sources of Secularism. Enlightenment and Beyond, A. Tomaszewska, H. Hämäläinen (eds.), Palgrave Macmillan, New York: 21–33.
  • Michalson Jr. G.E. (1999), Kant and the Problem of God, Blackwell Publishers Ltd., Oxford.
  • O’Neill O. (1997), Kant on Reason and Religion, [in:] Tanner Lectures on Human Values 18, G.B. Peterson (ed.), Utah University Press, Utah: 267–308.
  • Palmquist S.R. (2000), Kant’s Critical Religion. Volume Two of Kant’s System of Perspectives, Ashgate, Aldershot.
  • Palmquist S.R. (2017), “Kant’s Model for Building the True Church: Transcending ‘Might Makes Right’ and ‘Should Makes Good’ through the Idea of a Non-Coercive Theocracy,” Diametros 54: 76–94.
  • Palmquist S.R. (2019), Kant and Mysticism. Critique as the Experience of Baring All in Reason’s Light, Lexington Books, Lanham.
  • Tampio N. (2014), “Pluralism in the Ethical Community,” [in:] Kant’s Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason. A Critical Guide, G.E. Michalson (ed.), Cambridge University Press, Cambridge: 175–192.
  • Wimmer R. (1990), Kants kritische Religionsphilosophie, Walter de Gruyter, Berlin, New York.
  • Wood A.W. (2011), “Ethical Community, Church and Scripture,” [in:] Die Religion innerhalb der Grenzen der bloßen Vernunft, O. Höffe (ed.), Akademie Verlag, Berlin: 131–150.
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