The Free Play of the Faculties and the Status of Natural Beauty in Kant's Theory of Taste

Abstract
I argue that the free play of the faculties in Kant's theory of beauty should be interpreted as an activity that involves, over and above cognition, the aesthetic presentation of rational ideas. Two consequences of this proposal are then discussed: (1) Beauty in nature is not systematically prior to, or more basic than, artificial beauty; (2) genius and taste are connected more closely in the notion of the free play than Kant admits in the final version of his theory; this more intimate association can be traced in the reflections on aesthetics from the 1770s
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