The Graduate School of Letters is one of the few graduate schools in the country that offers a specialized program in ethics in addition to philosophy. Keio has the largest number of academic staff in ethics among any domestic university and is a center for ethics research in Japan.

Since its establishment in 1951, the Ethics Program within the Department of Philosophy and Ethics has conducted research and education on the western tradition, in particular modern German, French, British, American, and Russian moral philosophy. The fields of research covered by a course in Ethics include normative ethics, metaethics, applied ethics, history of ethics, philosophy of religion, and social philosophy. Every year we invite leading scholars from beyond those fields to give lectures that provide students with additional opportunities to delve deeper into ethics.

Around 10 students are enrolled in our program, each pursuing specialized research on issues of their own interest. An emphasis on small-group education helps students to write academic papers and become comfortable in interacting with other researchers.



Department/Specialty/Research Interest/Publication

  • ISHIDA, Kyoko
    Associate Professor

    German Ethical Thought, Philosophy of Law (esp. Immanuel Kant)

    I have an interest in Immanuel Kant’s practical philosophy, mainly his philosophy of law. I study the connection between Kant’s philosophy of law and his theoretical philosophy or ethics and how this connection affects his understanding of law, and attempt to clarify its implications to the current world. I am also interested in Kant’s ethics and thoughts of contemporary political philosophers, such as John Rawls and Jürgen Habermas, whose theories are influenced by Kant’s philosophy.

    • 〔論文〕「カント法哲学における許容法則の位置づけ」、日本カント協会編『カントと心の哲学』、日本カント研究8、2007年、161-176頁
    • 〔論文〕「いかにして法と道徳は区別しうるか――批判と形而上学――」、日本カント協会編『カントと形而上学』、日本カント研究13、2012年、197-211頁
    • 〔論文〕「カントによる<世界共和国否定論>の再検討」、日本哲学会『哲学』、第65号、2014年、103-117頁
    • 〔共著〕柘植尚則編『入門・倫理学の歴史――24人の思想家――』、梓出版社、2016年〔分担:第11章「カント」、113-122頁、第12章「ヘーゲル」、123-132頁、第21章「ハーバーマス」、231-240頁〕
    • 〔共訳〕ヴォルフガング・ケアスティング『自由の秩序――カントの法および国家の哲学――』、寺田俊郎・舟場保之監訳、ミネルヴァ書房、2013年〔分担:第II部「私法」および「訳者解説」、165-246頁、401-414頁〕
  • ERTL, Wolfgang

    History of Ethics, Metaphysics, Modern Ethics

    I am interested in topics situated at the intersection of metaphysics and ethics, mainly, but not exclusively in Kant. These topics include the multifaceted debate on free will and determinism, the question of objectivity and realism in ethics, Kant’s transcendental idealism and his approach to moral philosophy, as well as the conception of natural practical law in Aquinas and Scotus. Currently, I am working on a monograph on the relevance of Scholastic thought for Kant’s theoretical and practical philosophy. Kant, in my opinion, is far less revolutionary than often assumed and needs to be read in the context of this tradition.

    • Kants Auflösung der“dritten Antinomie”: Zur Bedeutung des Schöpfungskonzepts für die Freiheitslehre(Freiburg, München: Alber, 1998)
    • David Hume und die Dissertation von 1770: Eine Untersuchung zur Entwicklungsgeschichte der Philosophie Immanuel Kants(Frankfurt/M.: Lang, 1999)
    • “Ludewig”Molina and Kant's Libertarian Compatibilism, in Matthias Kaufmann and Alexander Aichele (eds), A Companion to Luis de Molina (Leiden, Boston: Brill, 2014)
    • On Christopher Insole's "Kant and the Creation of Freedom." In: Critique (2017), online.
    • The Guarantee of Perpetual Peace in Kant: Remarks on the Relationship between Providence and Nature', In: Violetta L. Waibel et al. (eds.), Natur und Freiheit. (Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter, 2018).
  • TSUGE, Hisanori

    History of British Ethical Thought

    I have been doing research in the fields of history of ethics, theory of ethics and applied ethics. In history of ethics, I have been trying to trace the history of modern British ethical thought and to understand its whole story; in theory of ethics, trying to examine main theories of contemporary ethics and to show their possibilities and limitations; and in applied ethics, trying to consider ethical problems in economy and to analyze their causes.

    • 『良心の興亡:近代イギリス道徳哲学研究』(ナカニシヤ出版、2003/増補版、山川出版社、2016)
    • 『イギリスのモラリストたち』(研究社、2009)
    • 『プレップ倫理学』(弘文堂、2010)
    • 『プレップ経済倫理学』(弘文堂、2014)
    • 『入門・倫理学の歴史:24人の思想家』(編著、梓出版社、2016)
  • NARA, Masatoshi (Tetsuro)

    Contemporary French Philosophy, Biomedical Ethics

    I am interested in contemporary French philosophy and biomedical ethics. I am currently engaged in two research projects: the genealogy of French spiritualism and the virtue ethics approach to the ethical issues in medicine.

    • 『シリーズ生命倫理学 第12巻 先端医療』(共著、丸善出版、2012)
    • The Future of Bioethics: International Dialogues(共著、Oxford University Press, 2014)
    • 『救急・集中治療における臨床倫理』(共著、克誠堂出版、2016)
    • 『入門・倫理学』(共著、勁草書房、2018)
  • YAMAUCHI, Shiro

    History of Medieval and Modern Thought, Ethics and Metaphysics

    My research is interdisciplinary, bringing together the histories of medieval ethics, metaphysics, science, and religious thought, with special emphasis on the historical development of the theory of emotions. These aspects have much to do with the various contemporary problems of highly information-oriented societies. My teaching is designed to help students understand the ethical frameworks of values, the theories of virtue-ethics, and other various problems.

    • 『天使の記号学』(岩波書店、2001)
    • 『ライプニッツ』(NHK出版、2003)
    • 『普遍論争:近代の源流としての』(平凡社ライブラリー、2008)
    • 『存在の一義性を求めて』(岩波書店、2011)
    • 『「誤読」の哲学:ドゥルーズ、フーコーから中世哲学へ』(青土社、2013)