Space and Incongruence

The Origin of Kant’s Idealism

  • Authors
  • Jill Vance Buroker

Part of the Synthese Historical Library book series (SYHL, volume 21)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-vii
  2. Jill Vance Buroker
    Pages 1-6
  3. Jill Vance Buroker
    Pages 7-23
  4. Jill Vance Buroker
    Pages 24-49
  5. Jill Vance Buroker
    Pages 50-68
  6. Jill Vance Buroker
    Pages 92-118
  7. Jill Vance Buroker
    Pages 119-131
  8. Jill Vance Buroker
    Pages 132-134
  9. Back Matter
    Pages 135-145

About this book


Kantian transcendental idealism is the thesis that fundamental aspects of experience are contributed by the perceiving subject rather than by the things experienced, and are not features of things as they exist independently of sensible perceivers. This is undoubtedly the most striking and at the same time the most puzzling of Kant's Critical views. It is striking because nothing could be less commonsensical than the beliefthat things as we perceive them have nothing in common with things as they are independently ofbeing per­ ceived. From a more technical point of viewthe doctrine is puzzling because Kant apparently does not support it very well. Beginning with Kant's con­ temporaries, critics have pointed out that among all the arguments for the theory in the CritiqueofPureReason, none entails the conclusion that things in themselves cannot be like objects of sense experience in any way. So, for example, although transcendental idealism is compatible with Kant's theory of synthetic a priori knowledge, there is nothing in the analysis of the syn­ thetic a priori ruling out the possibility that features contributed to experi­ ence by the perceiving subject correspond to characteristics of things in them­ selves, although we might never know this to be so. And even though Kant sees transcendental idealism as a solution to the Antinomies, this is at best indirect support for the view;there are undoubtedly other ways to get around these traditional metaphysical puzzles.


Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Immanuel Kant idealism metaphysics nature physics sensibility space

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 1981
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-90-481-8363-0
  • Online ISBN 978-94-015-7660-4
  • Series Print ISSN 0082-111X
  • Buy this book on publisher's site