David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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European Journal of Philosophy 19 (4):507-531 (2011)
Abstract: This article contends that the relation of early logical empiricism to Kant was more complex than is often assumed. It argues that Reichenbach's early work on Kant and Einstein, entitled The Theory of Relativity and A Priori Knowledge (1920) aimed to transform rather than to oppose Kant's Critique of Pure Reason. One the one hand, I argue that Reichenbach's conception of coordinating principles, derived from Kant's conception of synthetic a priori principles, offers a valuable way of accounting for the historicity of scientific paradigms. On the other hand, I show that even Reichenbach, in line with Neo-Kantianism, associated Kant's view of synthetic a priori principles too closely with Newtonian physics and, consequently, overestimated the difference between Kant's philosophy and his own. This is even more so, I point out, in the retrospective account logical empiricism presented of its own history. Whereas contemporary reconstructions of this history, including Michael Friedman's, tend to endorse this account, I offer an interpretation of Kant's conception of a priori principles that contrasts with the one put forward by both Neo-Kantianism and logical empiricism. On this basis, I re-examine the early Reichenbach's effort to accommodate these principles to the paradigm forged by Einstein
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References found in this work BETA
Alberto Coffa (1991). The Semantic Tradition From Kant to Carnap: To the Vienna Station. Cambridge University Press.
Michael Friedman (1992). Causal Laws and the Foundations of Natural Science. In Paul Guyer (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Kant. Cambridge University Press. 3--161.
Michael Friedman (2001). Dynamics of Reason: The 1999 Kant Lectures at Stanford University. Csli Publications.
Michael Friedman (1992). Kant and the Exact Sciences. Harvard University Press.
Michael Friedman (1999). Reconsidering Logical Positivism. Cambridge University Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Paul L. Franco (2012). Are Kant's Concepts and Methodology Inconsistent with Scientific Change? Constitutivity and the Synthetic Method in Kant. Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 2 (2):321-353.
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