17. Critique of Practical Reason, by Immanurel Kant. Translated by H.W. Cassirer. Edited by G. Heath King and Ronald Weitzman with an Introduction by D.M. MacKinnon. ISBN 0-87462-616-1. ©1998. Paperbound. New Index. 218 pp. $15

Kant’s Critique of Practical Reason is an acknowledged masterpiece of Western philosophy. The way H.W. Cassirer’s translation uncoils Kant’s attempt at reconciling determinism with moral freedom will enable serious students of philosophy—and theology—to engage anew not only with this theme but also with Kant’s whole treatment of God, freedom, and immortality. The unceasing intellectual rigor of this version articulates the process of the struggle between free will and our natural inclinations, which in turn lies at the heart of Kant’s moral teaching. This translation affords the reader an at once deeper and more lucid account of Kant’s ageless thesis than has as yet been achieved in the English language.

H.W. Cassirer (son of Ernst Cassirer) wrote commentaries on Aristotle’s De Anima, and Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason and Critique of Judgment. Among his late works are Grace and Law, which explores both the similarities and the fierce contrasts between the moral teachings of St. Paul, Kant, and the Hebrew prophets, and a translation of The New Testament, God’s New Covenant. The questions of moral freedom, of good and evil, remained for him consuming preoccupations, and he made this translation of Kant’s Critique of Practical Reason towards the end of his life.


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