J. N. Findlay

in Kant and the Transcendental Object

Published in print August 1981 | ISBN: 9780198246381
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191680960 | DOI:

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This chapter discusses the following: (i) The Kantian concept of the Transcendental Object, and of its relation to that of the Noumenon and the Thing-in-itself; (ii) Kant's theory of knowledge cannot be positivistically interpreted, but requires underlying unities that hold appearances together, and which, by their identity, give the latter constancy of character; (iii) Kant's theory of knowledge cannot be idealistically interpreted, since it accepts the reality of a Transcendental Subject and of transcendental acts that exist beyond experience and knowledge, and are constitutive of it. It also accepts the reality of many Transcendental Objects that affect our subjectivity and which have characters and relations not given to the latter, at best corresponding to phenomenal characters and relations; (iv) Kant's phenomenalism is more radical than other phenomenalisms in that it accepts space and time only as ordering forms for phenomena. But it advances important arguments, based mainly on ontological criteria, for restricting them to what is thus phenomenal; (v) The regular connection among the appearances of objects is the necessary empirical surrogate for the unity of the objects from which they spring. Kant therefore makes use of his metempirical presuppositions to illuminate phenomenal data.

Keywords: Transcendental Object; Noumenon; Thing-in-itself; theory of knowledge; phenomenalism; metempirical presuppositions

Chapter.  11568 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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