Review of Metaphysics 48 (2):423-425 (1994)

Daniel Dahlstrom
Boston University
In the section of the Critique of Pure Reason entitled "Clue to the Discovery of All Pure Concepts of the Understanding," Kant criticizes Aristotle for having "thrown together" his list of categories. On the basis of what Kant says in that same section, however, it has seemed to many readers that Kant's presentation of the categories on the basis of the table of the logical forms of judgment is no less "rhapsodic." In this and other related respects the so-called metaphysical deduction of the categories has long been a major stumbling block for students of Kant's theoretical philosophy. What precisely is the "principle" on the basis of which, according to Kant, the basic concepts of transcendental philosophy are to be sought? Why and how are the categories derived from forms of judgment? If something like this derivation can be shown to be legitimate, how is it possible to demonstrate that the logical forms of judgment have been adequately and completely identified?
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0034-6632
DOI revmetaph1994482167
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