Kant And Maria Von Herbert: View Of A Friendship
In Korsgaard point of view a friendship is a good thing because of its moral relation. Friendship is more of a union of intimate love and respect rather than a mutual advantage. A person with no friends lives in a prison because he can not share his interests or activities like people that have friends and are happily free. The point of a moral friendship is a complete connection of confidence between two people to be able to share their secrets, activities and everything about themselves. In the letter Maria von Herbert states her desire to end her life because of her depression. She says that her duty has becomes very easy since she no longer has any passions. In Kant’s point of view duty is only confirm to be a right action if it is done for the sake of duty. The way that Maria von Herbert is living her life makes her a Kantian saint since she only lives to act for the sake of duty. For Kant, Maria von Herbert is living a morally good and correct life. So when the diagnosis is given for Maria von Herbert it is wrong. Since Maria von Herbert has no passions and her life is empty, she has a clear vision of her unhappiness, which make Kant abandon her since is it much easier to diagnose a simpler and more easy illness. We make people into things or objects, we basically convert them into an object without their consent to do so.
When trying to save a friend we may turn them into an object by the words we use. If our goal was to save our friend from being killed and decide to lie the murder or killer but saying that our friend is not present, then we use that person as a tool to accomplish our goal of saving them. By lying we make it impossible for our friend to share the tool, the lie that they are not present, to protect themselves. Lying and converting our friend into an object later comes with bad consequences. If you tell the truth you become an instrument of evil because now the killer will use that to his advantage. But you are not responsible for the evil that comes with the truth in Kant’s eyes Maria von Herbert has a clear vision of her empty life and know that she has nothing to life for so Kant does not take her letter very seriously. A friend of Kany also adivices him not to respond to Maria von Herbert because he may be distracted by “the object to which she enfettered” In the 18th century women were known to have a price and not a dignity. Women are seen as an object to be sold in the marketplace. Women who are virgins tend to have a much higher price than non virgin women. Kant comes to believe that since Maria von Herbert has a clear vision that she has come to the duty of lying for her friend. So if she tell the truth she becomes an object and then friendship falls in with duty.
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