BA (with Honors), Philosophy, University of Melbourne, 2012
Kant, German Philosophy, Logic
PHIL 29200-05/29300-05 Junior/Senior Tutorial
Topic: Kant’s Transcendental Deduction of the Categories
The Transcendental Deduction of the Pure Concepts of Understanding is the focal point of Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, and one of the most fascinating, puzzling, and suggestive passages in the history of philosophy. In it, Kant attempts to show that the a priori concepts of any finite thinker – the pure concepts of the understanding or ‘categories’ – necessarily apply to, and describe, empirical objects. Along the way Kant provides fascinating insights into such philosophical topics as self-consciousness and the self, judgment, knowledge, laws of nature, objectivity and subjectivity, perception, space, and time.
This course will be a close reading of the B-edition Transcendental Deduction, along with other portions of the Critique of Pure Reason necessary for understanding the Transcendental Deduction. The early weeks of the course will be devoted to getting Kant’s program and problem into view; the remainder of the course will be spent slowly working through the B-edition Transcendental Deduction. Students should come away from the course with an understanding of the problem of the Transcendental Deduction, a grasp of Kant’s argumentative strategy, and a sense of the Transcendental Deduction’s place in the book as a whole.
Meets with Jr/Sr section. Prerequisite: Open only to philosophy majors. Intensive-Track Majors should reach out to the instructor to be enrolled manually. No more than two tutorials may be used to meet program requirements.