Philosophical Studies

, Volume 164, Issue 1, pp 233–254 | Cite as

What is nonconceptualism in Kant’s philosophy?



The aim of this paper is to critically review several interpretations of Kantian sensible intuition. The first interpretation is the recent construal of Kantian sensible intuition as a mental analogue of a direct referential term. The second is the old, widespread assumption that Kantian intuitions do not refer to mind-independent entities, such as bodies and their physical properties, unless they are brought under categories. The third is the assumption that, by referring to mind-independent entities, sensible intuitions represent objectively in the sense that they represent in a relative, perspective-independent manner. The fourth is the construal of Kantian sensible intuitions as non-conceptual content. In this paper, I support the alternative view that Kantian sensible representation is to be seen as iconic de re presentation of objects without representational content.


Sensible intuition Non-conceptualism Direct reference De re mode of presentation 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ)Rio de JaneiroBrazil

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