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Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals

Immanuel Kant
Edited by Thomas E. Hill and Translated by Arnulf Zweig

Publication Date - 03 April 2003

ISBN: 9780198751809

304 pages


In this classic text, Kant sets out to articulate and defend the Categorical Imperative - the fundamental principle that underlies moral reasoning - and to lay the foundation for a comprehensive account of justice and human virtues.

This new edition and translation of Kant's work is designed especially for students. An extensive and comprehensive introduction explains the central concepts of Groundwork and looks at Kant's main lines of argument. Detailed notes aim to clarify Kant's thoughts and to correct some common misunderstandings of his doctrines.


  • Accessible and practical guide to Kant's most well-known work in ethics
  • New accurate and clear translation by Arnulf Zweig
  • Includes editorial material specially written for students new to the subject, including a sketch of Kant's life, a substantial introduction and an analysis of the main arguments of the text
  • Hill is an extremely well-regarded and influential commentator on Kant's moral philosophy and Zweig is a very gifted translator of Kant

About the Author(s)

Thomas E. Hill Jr. is Kenan Professor of Philosophy at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He has also taught at the University of California at Los Angeles and has held visiting appointments at Stanford University and the University of Minnesota.

He has written widely on ethics and political philosophy. Books published previously include 'Human Welfare and Moral Worth' (2002), 'Respect, Pluralism and Justice: Kantian Perspectives' (2000) and 'Dignity and Practical Reason in Kant's Moral Theory' (1992). Arnulf Zweig currently teaches at Baruch College, City University of New York. He is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at the University of Oregon and has held visiting appointments at Harvard and M.I.T.

He is the editor and translator of Kant's correspondence and has published articles in the philosophy of law, ethics and the history of philosophy. Books published previously include 'Kant: Correspondence' (1999) and Kant: Philosophical Correspondence, 1759-1799 (1967, 1970).

Table of Contents

    Features of this edition
    Abbreviations for Kant's Works
    A Sketch of Kant's Life
    Editor's Introduction
    Summary of Arguments
    I. Passage from the Common Knowledge of Morality to the Philosophical
    II. Transition from Popular Moral Philosophy to the Metaphysics of Morals
    III. Passage from the Metaphysics of Morals to a Critique of Practical Reason
    Suggested Readings
    Bibliography of Works Cited