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Karol Frenkel and the tradition of ethics


Karol Frenkel was one of Kazimierz Twardowski’s first disciples to undertake an attempt to develop their own concept of ethics. In his case, the process of developing his own ethical concept involved questioning the tradition in which he had been educated. Accordingly, he was able to formulate an original concept of independent ethics. In his doctoral dissertation, Frenkel analyzed two ethical systems, formulated by David Hume and Arthur Schopenhauer respectively which sought ethical determinants in the affective sphere. For Frenkel, these proposals turned out to be unsatisfactory, and thus he proposed his own solution derived from the accepted concept of morality. From today’s perspective, it was the first reflection in Poland referring to scientific ethics, which – chronologically speaking – in many respects preceded the analogous solutions proposed later by British analytical philosophers.