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This book puts forward a much-needed reappraisal of Immanuel Kant's conception of and response to skepticism, as set forth principally in the Critique of Pure Reason. It is widely recognized that Kant's theoretical philosophy aims to answer skepticism and reform metaphysics--Michael Forster makes the controversial argument that those aims are closely linked. He distinguishes among three types of skepticism: "veil of perception" skepticism, which concerns the external world; Humean skepticism, which concerns the existence of a priori concepts and synthetic a priori knowledge; and Pyrrhonian skepticism, which concerns the equal balance of opposing arguments. Forster overturns conventional views by showing how the first of these types was of little importance for Kant, but how the second and third held very special importance for him, namely because of their bearing on the fate of metaphysics. He argues that Kant undertook his reform of metaphysics primarily in order to render it defensible against these types of skepticism. Finally, in a critical appraisal of Kant's project, Forster argues that, despite its strengths, it ultimately fails, for reasons that carry interesting broader philosophical lessons. These reasons include inadequate self-reflection and an underestimation of the resources of Pyrrhonian skepticism.
Katerina Deligiorgi interprets Kant’s conception of enlightenment within the broader philosophical project of his critique of reason. Analyzing a broad range of Kant’s works, including his Critique of Pure Reason, the Critique of Judgment, his lectures on anthropology and logic, as well as his shorter essays, she identifies the theoretical and practical commitments that show the achievement of rational autonomy as an ongoing project for the realization of a culture of enlightenment. Deligiorgi also considers Kant’s ideas in relation to the work of Diderot, Rousseau, Mendelssohn, Reinhold, Hamann, Schiller, and Herder. The perspective opened by this historical dialogue challenges twentieth-century revisionist interpretations of the Enlightenment to show that the “culture of enlightenment” is not simply a fragment of our intellectual history but rather a live project.
For the past 200 years, Kant has acted as a lens--sometimes a distorting lens--between historians of philosophy and early modern intellectual history. Kant's writings about Descartes, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, and Hume have been so influential that it has often been difficult to see these predecessors on any terms but Kant's own. In Kant and the Early Moderns, Daniel Garber and Béatrice Longuenesse bring together some of the world's leading historians of philosophy to consider Kant in relation to these earlier thinkers.
These original essays are grouped in pairs. A first essay discusses Kant's direct engagement with the philosophical thought of Descartes, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, or Hume, while a second essay focuses more on the original ideas of these earlier philosophers, with reflections on Kant's reading from the point of view of a more direct interest in the earlier thinker in question. What emerges is a rich and complex picture of the debates that shaped the "transcendental turn" from early modern epistemology, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind to Kant's critical philosophy.
The contributors, in addition to the editors, are Jean-Marie Beyssade, Lisa Downing, Dina Emundts, Don Garrett, Paul Guyer, Anja Jauernig, Wayne Waxman, and Kenneth P. Winkler.
While earlier work has emphasized Kant's philosophy of religion as thinly disguised morality, this timely and original reappraisal of Kant's philosophy of religion incorporates recent scholarship. In this volume, Chris L. Firestone, Stephen R. Palmquist, and the other contributors make a strong case for more specific focus on religious topics in the Kantian corpus. Main themes include the relationship between Kant's philosophy of religion and his philosophy as a whole, the contemporary relevance of specific issues arising out of Kant's philosophical theology, and the relationship of Kant's philosophy to Christian theology. As a whole, this book capitalizes on contemporary movements in Kant studies by looking at Kant not as an anti-metaphysician, but as a genuine seeker of spirituality in the human experience.
Immanuel Kant is rarely connected to rhetoric by those who study philosophy or the rhetorical tradition. If anything, Kant is said to see rhetoric as mere manipulation and as not worthy of attention. In Kant and the Promise of Rhetoric, Scott Stroud presents a first-of-its-kind reappraisal of Kant and the role he gives rhetorical practices in his philosophy. By examining the range of terms that Kant employs to discuss various forms of communication, Stroud argues that the general thesis that Kant disparaged rhetoric is untenable. Instead, he offers a more nuanced view of Kant on rhetoric and its relation to moral cultivation. For Kant, certain rhetorical practices in education, religious settings, and public argument become vital tools to move humans toward moral improvement without infringing on their individual autonomy. Through the use of rhetorical means such as examples, religious narratives, symbols, group prayer, and fallibilistic public argument, individuals can persuade other agents to move toward more cultivated states of inner and outer autonomy. For the Kant recovered in this book, rhetoric becomes another part of human activity that can be animated by the value of humanity, and it can serve as a powerful tool to convince agents to embark on the arduous task of moral self-cultivation.
On the Regulative Role of the Psychological Idea
Immanuel Kant is strict about the limits of self-knowledge: our inner sense gives us only appearances, never the reality, of ourselves. Kant may seem to begin his inquiries with an uncritical conception of cognitive limits, but in Kant and the Subject of Critique, Avery Goldman argues that, even for Kant, a reflective act must take place before any judgment occurs. Building on Kant’s metaphysics, which uses the soul, the world, and God as regulative principles, Goldman demonstrates how Kant can open doors to reflection, analysis, language, sensibility, and understanding. By establishing a regulative self, Goldman offers a way to bring unity to the subject through Kant’s seemingly circular reasoning, allowing for critique and, ultimately, knowledge.
“Yes, Kant did indeed speak of extraterrestrials.” This phrase could provide the opening for this brief treatise of philosofiction (as one speaks of science fiction). What is revealed in the aliens of which Kant speaks—and he no doubt took them more seriously than anyone else in the history of philosophy—are the limits of globalization, or what Kant called cosmopolitanism.Before engaging Kantian considerations of the inhabitants of other worlds, before comprehending his reasoned alienology, this book works its way through an analysis of the star wars raging above our heads in the guise of international treaties regulating the law of space, including the cosmopirates that Carl Schmitt sometimes mentions in his late writings.Turning to track the comings and goings of extraterrestrials in Kant’s work, Szendy reveals that they are the necessary condition for an unattainable definition of humanity. Impossible to represent, escaping any possible experience, they are nonetheless inscribed both at the heart of the sensible and as an Archimedean point from whose perspective the interweavings of the sensible can be viewed.Reading Kant in dialogue with science fiction films (films he seems already to have seen) involves making him speak of questions now pressing in upon us: our endangered planet, ecology, a war of the worlds. But it also means attempting to think, with or beyond Kant, what a point of view might be.
Kant on Causality, Freedom, and Objectivity was first published in 1984. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
Kant's account of causation is central to his views on objective truth and freedom. The Second Analogy of Experience, in the Critique of Pure Reason,where he provides his defense of the causal principle, has long been the focus of intense philosophical research. In the past twenty years, there have been two major periods of interest in Kantian themes, The first coincided with a general turn away from positivism by analytic philosophers, and resulted in a fruitful interchange between Kant scholars and those who applied Kantian ideas to contemporary philosophical problems. In recent years, a new surge of interest in Kant's work occurred along with the developing controversy over realism generated by the work of Dummett and Putnam. Scholars now appreciate the extent to which the Kantian causal principle is illuminated by the philosopher's argument that his transcendental idealism supports an empirical realism. And in turn, Kant's views on objectivity, causation, and freedom are especially relevant to the philosophical concerns raised by the new debate over realism.
The eight papers in this book are drawn from two conferences that honored Lewis White Beck, an influential Kant scholar. Together with the introductory essay by the editors, they show the continuing relevance of Kant's analysis for the present-day philosophy of causation.