Kant’s Dialectic Argument and the Restriction of Knowledge

James Kreines

in Reason in the World

Published in print June 2015 | ISBN: 9780190204303
Published online May 2015 | e-ISBN: 9780190204327 | DOI:
Kant’s Dialectic Argument and the Restriction of Knowledge

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Kant’s Transcendental Dialectic provides a strong case for the restriction of our knowledge to the bounds of sensibility, and the consequent impossibility of metaphysics for us. This critique of metaphysics does not rest on epistemological assumptions. It turns on arguments for the inescapability of philosophical questions about the unconditioned. Kant argues that the most obvious answers to those questions are unacceptable. Most answers are forced by the considerations of the Antinomies into dogmatism. The obvious alternatives are forced to an unacceptable form of skeptical hopelessness. The only solution, Kant argues, is his restriction of knowledge within the bounds of sensibility. The resulting critique of metaphysics does not target only views on which there are otherworldly entities; it targets a specific form of argument, from principles demanding the explicability of reality.

Keywords: Kant; Transcendental Dialectic; critique of metaphysics; unconditioned; Hegel; Antinomies; restriction of knowledge; bounds of sensibility

Chapter.  10413 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy ; Philosophy

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