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Kant and the EmpiricistsUnderstanding Understanding$
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Wayne Waxman

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195177398

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2006

DOI: 10.1093/0195177398.001.0001

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Kant and British Empiricism

Kant and British Empiricism

(p.3) 1 Kant and British Empiricism
Kant and the Empiricists

Wayne Waxman

Oxford University Press

This chapter begins with a discussion of the concept of sensibilism, the theory that all ideas originate in being perceived, and are non-existent prior to or independently of their immediate presence to consciousness in perception. It dispels one of the most common misconceptions about sensibilism: its limitation to a thesis about the senses as merely sources of sensations. It argues that sensibilism, as the principle of unity, and psychologism, as the principle of continuity, connect the philosophies of John Locke, George Berkeley, David Hume, and Immanuel Kant. An understanding of the fundamental principles uniting Kant with his British Empiricist predecessors, particularly Hume, will show that the only thing that separates Kant’s positions from theirs is a source of representations unconsidered by Locke, Berkeley, and Hume — pure sensible intuition.

Keywords:   Immanuel Kant, John Locke, George Berkeley, David Hume, transcendental philosophy, empiricism, sensibilism, psychologism, British Empiricists

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