Chapter

Sensual Idealism: The Spirit of Epicurus and the Politics of Finitude in Kant and Hölderlin

Anthony Curtis Adler

in Dynamic Reading

Published in print May 2012 | ISBN: 9780199794959
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199949694 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199794959.003.0008

Series: Classical Presences

Sensual Idealism: The Spirit of Epicurus and the Politics of Finitude in Kant and Hölderlin

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In “Sensual Idealism: The Spirit of Epicureanism and the Politics of Finitude in Kant and Hölderlin,” Anthony Adler studies Kant’s idiosyncratic and surprisingly positive reception of Epicureanism. Adler argues that despite his rejection of Epicureanism as dogmatic doctrine, Kant nonetheless endorses, and remains engaged with, the spirit of Epicureanism throughout his critical philosophy. Particularly important to this discussion is Kant’s reading of the Epicurean technical term, prolēpsis, which the German views as an anticipation of his own a priori concepts. As a coda to his study of Kant, Adler examines Hölderlin’s largely unrecognized engagement with Kant’s reformulation of Epicureanism in his Death of Empedocles.

Keywords: Kant; Epicurus; Hölderlin; prolepsis; German idealism; German romanticism

Chapter.  15552 words. 

Subjects: Classical Philosophy

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