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The Normativity of NatureEssays on Kant's Critique of Judgement$
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Hannah Ginsborg

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199547975

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199547975.001.0001

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Kant on the Subjectivity of Taste

Kant on the Subjectivity of Taste

(p.15) Essay 1 Kant on the Subjectivity of Taste
The Normativity of Nature

Hannah Ginsborg

Oxford University Press

The essay defends the subjectivity of judgements of beauty for Kant by arguing against Karl Ameriks’ proposal that judgements of beauty are like judgements of colour and other secondary-quality judgements in being objective. The core of the argument is an appeal to what Kant calls the ‘autonomy’ of taste, and, more specifically, to the idea that judgements of beauty cannot be based on testimony. The essay draws on that argument to criticize the objectivism about judgements of beauty defended by John McDowell and David Wiggins. It argues that judgements of beauty are subjective, not just in the weak sense that they are intelligible only in relation to human sensibility, but also in the stronger sense that any ascription of beauty to an object depends on the feeling of the particular human being who is making the ascription.

Keywords:   David Wiggins, John McDowell, judgement of beauty, Karl Ameriks, objectivity, secondary qualities, subjectivity, testimony

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