Gary Hatfield
University of Pennsylvania
This paper examines Helmholtz's attempt to use empirical psychology to refute certain of Kant's epistemological positions. Particularly, Helmholtz believed that his work in the psychology of visual perception showed Kant's doctrine of the a priori character of spatial intuition to be in error. Some of Helmholtz's arguments are effective, but this effectiveness derives from his arguments to show the possibility of obtaining evidence that the structure of physical space is non-Euclidean, and these arguments do not depend on his theory of vision. Helmholtz's general attempt to provide an empirical account of the "inferences" of perception is regarded as a failure.
Keywords Geometry of physical space  Visual spatial perception  Non-Euclidean physical space  Helmholtz, H  Kant, I
Categories (categorize this paper)
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Die Grundlagen der Arithmetik.Gottlob Frege - 1988 - Felix Meiner Verlag.
Logische Syntax der Sprache.Jörgen Jörgenfen - 1934 - Erkenntnis 4 (1):419-422.
Kant's Theory of Mental Activity.William H. Baumer - 1964 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 25 (1):133-134.
Royce's Argumentjor the Absolute, WJ MANDER.Concerning First Principles - 1998 - In Daniel N. Robinson (ed.), The Mind. Oxford University Press.

View all 8 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Helmholtz, critique de la géométrie kantienne.Alexis Bienvenu - 2002 - Revue de Métaphysique et de Morale 3 (3):379-398.
Ewald Hering und die Gegenfarbtheorie.Michael Busse & Änne Bäumer-Schleinkofer - 1996 - NTM Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Wissenschaften, Technik und Medizin 4 (1):159-172.
Helmholtz's Theory of Space and its Significance for Schlick.Matthias Neuber - 2012 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 20 (1):163 - 180.
The Facts in Perception.Hermann von Helmholtz - 1977 - In Robert Cohen & Elkana Yehuda (eds.), Hermann Von Helmholtz: Epistemological Writings. Reidel. pp. 115-185.
On the Facts Underlying Geometry.Hermann von Helmholtz - 1977 - In Robert S. Cohen & Yehuda Elkana (eds.), Hermann Von Helmholtz: Epistemological Writings. Reidel. pp. 39-58.
Hermann von Helmholtz.Lydia Patton - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Berkeley, Helmholtz, the Moon Illusion, and Two Visual Systems.Helen E. Ross - 2001 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (1):116-117.
Geometry and Spatial Intuition: A Genetic Approach.Rene Jagnow - 2003 - Dissertation, Mcgill University (Canada)
Color Perception (in 3000 Words).Austen Clark - 1998 - In George Graham & William Bechtel (eds.), A Companion to Cognitive Science. Blackwell.


Added to PP index

Total views
405 ( #21,666 of 2,455,405 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
67 ( #10,772 of 2,455,405 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes