XI KANT KONGRESS, XI Congresso Kantiano Internazionale

Envy and Interpersonal Dependence in Kant’s Conception of Economic Justice

Jean-Christophe Merle

Edificio: Palazzo dei Congressi
Sala: Auditorium
Data: 26 maggio 2010 - 17:00
Ultima modifica: 13 aprile 2010


The main intention of Kant’s legal institutions is to make possible the implementation of emulative envy, while hindering that of destructive envy. Unlike Rawls, Kant considers envy as not originating from the feeling of injustice and not necessarily leading to destructive envy. Kant’s solution to the problem of destructive envy is not to eradicate the source of every kind of envy, but to ensure that interpersonal dependence and failure never become irrevocable. Yet, emulative envy would be better supported if emulative envy is also actively promoted. Since the more egalitarian a society is, the more emulative envy is developed, equality of opportunity should be promoted in order to increase envy. In fact, Kant ultimately refers all cultural progresses to envy, although he directly refers them to increased needs, for envy is the cause of all the needs that go beyond a very limited and constant number of natural needs.