Organic Unity as the “True Unity” of the Intuitive Intellect

Sally Sedgwick

in Hegel's Critique of Kant

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780199698363
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738692 | DOI:
Organic Unity as the “True Unity” of the Intuitive Intellect

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • History of Western Philosophy


Show Summary Details


Hegel describes the ‘true unity’ of the intuitive intellect as ‘organic unity.’ Kant’s idea of organic unity, he says, offers us a model of the ‘identity of the universal and the particular.’ The central aim of this chapter is to determine what Kant’s model of organic unity suggests to Hegel about the ‘true unity’ achieved by the intuitive intellect. It is argued that Hegel is particularly interested in the fact that, for Kant, the parts and whole of an organism stand in a relation of purposive reciprocal determination. Hegel takes this model of organic unity to suggest how human cognition is able to achieve the identity of concept and intuition. We are able to achieve identity, according to Hegel, because concepts and intuitions somehow stand to each other in a relation of reciprocal determination.

Keywords: human cognition; intuitive intellect; organic unity; organism; purpose; reciprocal determination; true unity

Chapter.  14123 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.