Your job this week is to put your entire skillset to work. I want you to excavate a single clear argument about the nature of personhood from this this long and difficult text. What is Kant’s thesis, premises (reasons for believing the thesis), and what evidence or definitions does he provide to support the premises. You should organize your essay to answer the following questions in approximately 750 words:
• What do you think is the central claim of the text? • What premises (reasons for believing the claim) does the text provide to support the claim? • Are these premises sufficient for believing the claim? • Are these premises necessary for believing the claim? • Is any evidence to support these premises? • What technical definitions, if any, are stipulated in the text? • Based on the above, is the argument provided in the text true? • Based on the above, is the argument provided in the text sound? • What implications are there if the argument is true? Why? • What reasons might someone give for disagreeing with the argument of this text? • What premises, evidence, or counter-claims could be used to support the counter-argument?
Finish your essay by taking a position of your own. What is your claim about the argument made in the text? What are your premises (reasons for believing the thesis is true)? What evidence do you have? Why might someone disagree with you? Why are you unpersuaded. This articulation of your own position should be approximately 250 words in length, and should refer back to the preceding philosophical analysis.
Please treat this assignment as one 1000 word essay. Be organized. Consistently follow a stylesheet like MLA, APA, or Chicago. You are encouraged to reference the work of Weston in providing an analysis of what is going on in the documentary. Finally, pay attention to the rubric. I will be happy to look at early drafts of this essay if you show me in advance.
I encourage you to read one another’s essays. See what other people are doing that is better than what you are doing. Follow their example. If you think someone else is doing something incorrectly, let them know. Constructive criticism is crucial at this point. As usual, I expect you to respond thoughtfully and respectfully to the work of a minimum two other students (50 words each). If someone writes on your essay, please respond. If you believe someone else has plagiarized please contact me.
For Kant persons must always treat persons as persons; yet what might this entail? That is to say, what rights, responsibilities, duties, and obligations exist between persons? If persons are ends in themselves, then when, if ever, are transactional relationships between persons acceptable?