Jakob Friedrich Fries (1773–1843) was a nineteenth-century German philosopher, contemporaneous with so-called “German Idealism,” who is best known for his main work, New Critique of Reason (1807/1828–1831).¹ Fries regards Kant’s philosophy as incomplete and tries to revise and renew it. Since he adopts Kant’s spirit of criticism, he emphasises the finitude of human cognition and in this respect he criticises his contemporaneous opponents: Reinhold, Fichte, and Schelling. Fries criticises Kant’s conception of transcendental cognition as follows: Although transcendental cognition concerns cognitions (...) a priori, transcendental cognition itself can be acquired only in an empirical way because human cognition always begins with experience. Hence Kant was in error to regard it as a priori. German Idealists elaborated on Kant’s mistake and interpreted mere inner perception as cognition a priori, which led them to adopt the “synthetic method” as a means of philosophising. Fries corrects them by assuming the “analytical method,” whereby he starts from the standpoint of ordinary experience by analysing “the ordinary opinions (Beurtheilungen) in daily life” in order to reveal the philosophical cognitions constructing the general presuppositions of opinions. He calls such a project “Critique of Reason.” Kuno Fischer (1824–1907), however, contradicts Fries’s approach by defending German Idealists, arguing that the cognition a priori can never be acquired in an empirical way. Otto Liebmann (1840 –1912) also follows Fischer and criticises Fries’s approach as a “retrogression to Locke.” In this article I deal with Fries’s conception of the “Critique of Reason” and respond to the objections above. Fries’s method is an analysis of opinions, which are neither mere experience nor logical judging (urtheilen). The philosophical cognitions constructing the presuppositions of opinions belong to “reason,” which is to be distinguished from “understanding,” which conducts the “analysing” operation by relying on arbitrary reflection. (shrink)
ABSTRACTThe article explores the connection between James's “radical empiricism” and Deleuze's “transcendental empiricism” with a particular focus on the concept of “pure experience.” It argues for the substantial nature of this connection in terms of both philosophical motivations and formal innovations. Both thinkers are motivated to construct “better” empiricisms that do not complacently accept conventional conceptual representations as exhaustive of the real. Moreover, radical empiricism develops a latent critique of representational models of consciousness that is accomplished through a turn to (...) events or processes as ontologically primary. These innovations are further developed by Deleuze in his treatment of the problem of individuation. Taken together, they help to specify the metaphysical reasons for the experimental pluralism that both James and Deleuze affirm, showing how these reasons are inextricable from the radical empiricist impulse to be maximally inclusive of modalities of real experience, including the felt, the vague, and the affective. Emphasizing the metaphysical dimensions of these alternative empiricisms brings into clearer focus the stakes of philosophical thought as part of the open-ended and ongoing relational processes by which the universe continues to unfold. (shrink)
In this collection of the Einstein Lectures delivered by the author at the University of Bern in December 2011, we find succinct and striking arguments that try to distinguish the debates on God from those on religion. Dworkin points out the religiosity prevalent in science and situates atheism also as ‘religious’.
What is time? Neither the numbering of the motion of things nor their schema, but their way of being. In language, time shows itself as tense. But every verb has both tense and aspect. So what is aspect? Irreducible to tense, it is the way in which anything is at any time whatsoever. Thus the way things are, their being, is not merely temporal – for it is just as aspectual.
This collection examines an aspect of Gilles Deleuze’s thought that has largely been neglected; whether or not Deleuze was a metaphysician. Answering this question may reveal the problematic nature of so-called postmodernism and the critique it leveled at the first philosophy, and it may help readers to better understand philosophy’s fate.