Kant’s Comments on our Current Wars

Floyd Rudmin

Immanuel Kant was born on April 22, 1724, in Königsberg, East Prussia, now the Russian city of Kaliningrad. Kant is considered to be one of the greatest philosophers in the history of Western Civilization. He was also an opponent of perpetual war. Possibly influential in Kant’s thinking about war was the fact that his family were Pietists, which were a Lutheran sect similar to Quakers.

The European wars of Kant’s era included the Russo-Swedish War (1741–1743), the War of Austrian Succession (1740–1748), the Seven Years War (1754–1763), the Russo-Turkish War (1768–1774), the Partitions of Poland (1772–1775), the American War of Independence (1775–1783), another Russo-Swedish War (1788–1790), the French Revolution (1789–1799), the Russo-Persian War (1796), and at the very end of his life, the beginning of the Napoleonic Wars (1797–1815).

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