Synthesis, Sensibility, and Kant's Philosophy of Mathematics

This paper presents an interpretation of Kant's analytic/ synthetic distinction and of the capacity he terms "sensibility" in order to offer a new account of Kant's claim that mathematics consists primarily of synthetic judgments which involve intuition. In Section 1, it is argued that the analytic/synthetic distinction is based upon a theory of concepts going back to Aristotle which sees these as organizable into genus/species hierarchies. Analytic judgments are those whose predicates are genus-related to the subject while synthetic judgments do not exhibit a genus/species relation between the predicate and the subject of the judgment. Section 2 considers the nature of sensibility which is argued to involve the discernment of mereological relations. Mathematics is then seen to involve the formation of concepts of these relations.
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DOI 10.2307/193115
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