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Zu Fichtes Wissenschaftslehre in den Versionen 1794/95, 1804/II und 1912
Author: Andreas Schmidt
In Fichtes Wissenschaftslehre wird die Autonomie der einen praktischen Vernunft zum unhintergehbaren Grundprinzip, das alle Operationen des Geistes bestimmt. Ziel dieses Buches ist es zu zeigen, dass dieser Grundgedanke sowohl Fichtes Frühphilosophie als auch seiner – noch kaum verstandenen – Spätphilosophie den Charakter eines „Systems der Freiheit“ verleiht.
In: West-Eastern Mirror
In: Idealismus und Romantik in Jena
In: Mit Fichte philosophieren
In: Freiheit nach Kant
Author: Andreas Schmidt

Abstract

This article is devoted to Fichte’s theory of intersubjectivity in his Foundations of Natural Right (1796/97). I will attribute three theses to Fichte. Firstly, an ontological thesis: To be a free rational being consists of socially ascribing a normative status. Secondly, a transcendental thesis: The conviction that other rational beings exist is a necessary condition for consciousness of oneself as a free rational being. Thirdly, a phenomenological thesis: Recognition of other subjects is immediate, not the result of some argument by analogy. It is, however, argued that Fichte’s belief-directed argument is insufficient to preclude skepticism regarding the existence of other subjects.

In: Mit Fichte philosophieren
In: Krankheit des Zeitalters oder heilsame Provokation?
In: The World as Active Power
In: The World as Active Power

Several Dutch politicians have recently argued that medical voluntary euthanasia laws should be extended to include healthy elderly citizens who suffer from non-medical ‘existential suffering’ (‘life fatigue’ or ‘completed life’). In response, some seek to show that cases of medical euthanasia are morally permissible in ways that completed life euthanasia cases are not. I provide a different, societal perspective. I argue against assessing the permissibility of individual euthanasia cases in separation of their societal context and history. An appropriate justification of euthanasia needs to be embedded in a wider solidaristic response to the causes of suffering. By classifying some suffering as ‘medical’ and some as ‘non-medical’, most societies currently respond to medical conditions in importantly different ways than they do to non-medical suffering. In medical cases, countries like the Netherlands have a health care, health research and public health system to systematically assign responsibilities to address causes of medical suffering. We lack such a system for non-medical suffering among elderly citizens, which makes completed life euthanasia importantly different from euthanasia in medical cases. Because of this moral ‘responsibility gap’, focusing on the permissibility of completed life euthanasia in separation of wider societal duties to attend to possible causes is societally inappropriate. To spell out this objection in more philosophical terms, I introduce the concept of acts that are morally permissible but contextually problematic.

In: Journal of Moral Philosophy