Kant 's Philosophical Concepts Of Space Essay

Kant 's Philosophical Concepts Of Space Essay

Length: 1645 words (4.7 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview


Kant’s Four Considerations on the A Priori Nature of Space

Knowledge about the world we inhabit is often considered the chief ambition of philosophy, and such was the desire of Immanuel Kant in his Critique of Pure Reason. The crux of his critique is the acknowledgment and application of synthetic, a priori judgments. This ambitious work contains a number of complex arguments regarding the inherent a priori/a posteriori nature of things and the analytic/synthetic reasoning behind human knowledge of such things. Perhaps one of the most disputable arguments posited by Kant involves the a priori nature of space. In Kant’s “Metaphysical Exposition”, a complex series labeled “The Four Considerations” are argued for in attempt to prove that space is not experience-contingent, but that space must be an inherently-understood, a priori layout for the universe.
Kant’s First Consideration regarding the a priori nature of space is as follows: “Space is not an empirical concept which has been derived from outer experiences. For in order that certain sensations be referred to as something outside me (that is, to something in another region of space from that in which I find myself), and similarly in order that I may be able to represent them as outside and alongside one another, and accordingly as not only different but as in different places, the representation of space must be presupposed. The representation of space cannot, therefore, be empirically obtained from the relations of outer appearance. On the contrary, this outer experience is itself possible at all only through that representation” (Kant A30/B46).
Sebastian Gardner interpreted this first Consideration to mean, “if the representation for space were not a priori, then it w...


... middle of paper ...


...a finite mind. Therefore space cannot be a concept” (Gardner 79). Gardner is here pointing out that a concept (like our conception of a book) can have an infinite number of representations of itself, but it is not infinite inwardly like space, because space contains an infinite number of constituents within it.
Immanuel Kant wrote four separate arguments in attempt to prove the a priori nature of space, and these arguments provide complex logical conditions to support his claim. Through direct analysis of traits, and in some cases, specific objects, the nature of space is directly contrasted with the nature of many other entities in attempt to prove its a priori nature. Space is requisite of all human experience, and through an a priori understanding of the layout of the universe, Kant believed humans were able to truly interact with the world they inhabit.








Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay on Kant And Kant 's Philosophical Ideas

- During the 17th century there were 2 great philosophers who achieved great fame from their philosophical ideas. The two great philosophers during the 17th century are Scot David Hume and Immanuel Kant. David Hume was a British empiricists while Kant’s goal was to bridge the gap between rationalism and Empiricism. Kant was also influenced by Hume’s ideas of empiricism and he wanted add more ideas to it. In this paper I will be comparing and contrasting David Hume and Immanuel Kant’s philosophical ideas....   [tags: Immanuel Kant, Philosophy, Empiricism, John Locke]

Better Essays
1261 words (3.6 pages)

Immanuel Kant's Theory of Judgment Essay example

- What are, and what are the differences between, judgments of perception and judgments of experience for Kant. Understanding how the mind works has been a major goal throughout philosophy, and an important piece of this deals with how humans come to experience the world. Many philosophers have attempted to investigate this issue, and Hume successfully proposed a framework by which human understanding could be understood. This writing, however, spurred Kant’s philosophical mind, awaking him from his “dogmatic slumber” and leading him to develop his own framework to define thought....   [tags: Immanuel Kant, 2015]

Better Essays
945 words (2.7 pages)

Essay about Kant 's Philosophy And Philosophy

- Immanuel Kant was a philosopher born on April 22, 1724, in Konigsberg, East Prussia. Kant devoted his life into writing, reading and teaching. During his time, Kant began his philosophical journey being a believer of rationalism, which is the study of anything based of reasoning or knowledge justifying an idea. He studied this for years but figured a different view was better. That view was the view through metaphysics. Metaphysics is the base of all philosophy which analyzes abstract concepts of life such as time and space....   [tags: Morality, Ethics, Immanuel Kant, Philosophy]

Better Essays
1476 words (4.2 pages)

Utilitarianism And Kant 's Theory Of The Categorical Imperative Essay

- Moral decision-making constitutes an important part of the everyday human life. In this paper, I will examine and contrast Utilitarianism and Kant’s theory of the Categorical Imperative, both, which provide people with a moral structure, and how the issue of etiquettes relates to Kantian Theory. It is important to note that both the theories have their advantages and drawbacks, thus to enable one to make a methodical decision, it is important to understand the basic principles of each. However, in this paper there will be a main focus on Kantian Categorical argument and then discussing the issue of etiquettes....   [tags: Immanuel Kant, Categorical imperative, Morality]

Better Essays
1620 words (4.6 pages)

Immanuel Kant’s Metaphysics Essay

- Immanuel Kant’s Metaphysics THEME In regard to Metaphysics, Kant’s results were seemingly the opposite to what he strove to achieve, cf. the claim, in his Introduction, that “In this enquiry . . . I venture to assert that there is not a single metaphysical problem which has not been solved, or for the solution of which the key has not been supplied.” In the summing up of his Prolegomena, he records with evident pride in achievement: “Anyone who has read through and grasped the principles of the CPR ....   [tags: Philosophy Philosophical Papers]

Better Essays
3660 words (10.5 pages)

Essay about Schopenhauer's Criticism of Kant's Analysis of Object

- Schopenhauer's Criticism of Kant's Analysis of Object Schopenhauer makes it clear that he is indebted to Kant for his vision of transcendental idealism, and that his Critique of Pure Reason [2] is a work of genius. However, Schopenhauer argued that Kant made many mistakes when formulating his philosophy, and he set about the task of uncovering them in his Criticism of the Kantian Philosophy, an appendix to be found in The World as Will and Representation [1]. In this essay I wish to analyse the criticism made against Kant's determination of an object, since this is an important factor if we are to comprehend how we understand reality....   [tags: Philosophy Philosophical Papers]

Better Essays
2387 words (6.8 pages)

Summary of Immanuel Kant's Life Essay

- Summary of Immanuel Kant's Life Immanuel Kant (1724-1804) spent all of his life in Königsberg, a small German town on the Baltic Sea in East Prussia. (After World War II, Germany's border was pushed west, so Königsberg is now called Kaliningrad and is part of Russia.) At the age of fifty-five, Kant appeared to be a washout. He had taught at Königsberg University for over twenty years, yet had not published any works of significance. During the last twenty-five years of his life, however, Kant left a mark on the history of philosophy that is rivaled only by such towering giants as Plato and Aristotle....   [tags: Papers]

Better Essays
1089 words (3.1 pages)

Kant: Metaphysical Exposition of Space Essay

- Kant: Metaphysical Exposition of Space Explain and asses what you think to be the best argument Kant gives as his “Metaphysical Exposition of Space” (B37-40) that space cannot be either and actual entity (Newtonian concept) or any independent relation among real things (Leibnizian concepti be on). In other words, is he successful in arguing that space must be (at least) a form of intuition. Do any of his arguments further show that space must be ONLY a form of intuition and not ALSO something Newtonian or Leibnizian....   [tags: Space Kant Philosophy Essays]

Better Essays
2558 words (7.3 pages)

Kant 's Philosophical Views Of Morality And Justice Essay

- Immanuel Kant was an eighteenth century philosopher whose ideas redefined philosophical views of morality and justice, and provided a base for modern philosophers to argue these ideas. In Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals, he argues against Hume’s idea of utilitarianism. Kant also explores the idea of freedom, free action, moral action, and how to determine if our actions are moral by use of the categorical imperative. Before Kant attempts to define freedom he first states that only rational beings are eligible to be free (Kant 57)....   [tags: Morality, Immanuel Kant, Ethics, Philosophy]

Better Essays
2119 words (6.1 pages)

Essay on A Deduction

- A Deduction Kant's subjective A deduction is not a "deduction" in the traditional philosophical sense. Rather, it is a "justification" in the sense of the language of legal practice. (1) What Kant wants to justify is that the categories are the necessary a priori conditions for the possibility of experiential objects. This justification also has another role in Kant's overall project. If he can prove the categories are the necessary a priori grounds for the possibility of experiential objects, then he can justify the use of philosophical synthetic a priori propositions....   [tags: Kant Psychology Essays]

Better Essays
3703 words (10.6 pages)