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Immanuel Kant - How is knowledge deprived of its objets?





Our paper was based on the assumption of an obvious connection between the four titles of comparison and the four "nothings", which led us to consider that the  "nothings" table served as a basic structure in the construction of the transcendental topics . This assumption helped us to formulate the following considerations:

1°-The table of the four "nothings" may be considered as a condensed summary of Kant's Weltanschauung.

2°-The "nothings" table may be interpreted from an historical standpoint, based on the difference among the four fields which it separates: on the one hand the field of logic and nature, and on the other hand the field of the dogmatic realism and the transcendental idealism. This standpoint gives the image of the two trends of thinking (the one from the pre-critical and the second from the critical period) which cross in this table. However, from the viewpoint of the transcendental philosophy, the four "nothings" may be regarded as the four limits of knowledge in Kant’s opinion: a) all we know is phenomena; b) the field of experience cannot be exceeded; c) the human sensitivity brings a limit in the realm of knowledge; d) the logic, which ignores the contents of knowledge and which deals  only with  the form of thinking, brings a limit too.

3°-Between the first three "nothings" and the first three titles of comparison there are obvious correlations. Kant’s critical examination of  the monadology, following the concepts of reflection in the transcendental topics, leads to the indirect indication of knowledge boundaries  because of its unfitted object, in Kant’s view;

4°-The critical period started with the Dissertation of 1770, which referred to the difference to be made between sensitivity and intellect. After the transcendental topic had been worked out, the importance of this difference became ever greater.

5°-In point of its contents, the entire Appendix seems to have been conceived starting from the table of the four "nothings".

6°-The table of the four "nothings" is not a result of the declared criterion, i.e., a consequence of the table of categories; on the contrary, this criterion was adapted subsequently. The four "nothings" seem to have been determined as a development of the two "nothings" already present in  Versuch, den Begriff der negativen Grossen in die Weltweisheit einzufuhren (1763).

7°-The entire Appendix seems to deal with the following problem: how is knowledge deprived of its objets? This  problem unites the two parts of the Appendix, i.e., the  transcendental topic and the table of the four "nothings".

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