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Kant's Empirical Realism$
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Paul Abela

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780199242740

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199242740.001.0001

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Empirical Realism and the Priority of Judgement

Empirical Realism and the Priority of Judgement

(p.15) 1 Empirical Realism and the Priority of Judgement
Kant's Empirical Realism

Paul Abela

Oxford University Press

Transcendental idealism is Immanuel Kant's general theory. Like a grand mansion, it includes many rooms, housing Kant's treatment of knowledge, morality, and aesthetics. Empirical realism is one room in that mansion. This room contains Kant's analysis of the conditions necessary for knowledge of the familiar world of empirical objects. Empirical realism is seldom a topic of conversation even among Kant scholars. There are, no doubt, many reasons for this omission: a reluctance to stake too much on the realist designation; a desire to highlight the negative lessons of the Critique of Pure Reason by focusing on the boundary conditions for knowledge; or simply the routine of thinking about Kant's account of knowledge in terms of the general theory of transcendental idealism. This chapter provides a sketch of the Priority-of-Judgement approach and discusses the requirements of empirical truth and reference—central components of Kant's account of judgement—in the context of necessary conditions for the possibility of determinate inner content.

Keywords:   transcendental idealism, Critique of Pure Reason, morality, aesthetics, empirical realism, Immanuel Kant, knowledge, judgement, truth, reference

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