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  1. God, Powers, and Possibility in Kant’s Beweisgrund.Michael Oberst - manuscript
    This paper proposes a novel reading of Kant’s account of the dependence of possibility on God in the pre-Critical Beweisgrund. I argue that Kant has a theistic-potentialist conception of the way God grounds possibility, according to which God grounds possibility by his understanding and will. The reason is that Kant accepts what I call the Principle of Possible Existence: If something is possible, then it is possible that it exists. Furthermore, I explore the connection between causal powers and possibility, the (...)
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  2. Kant’s Account of Real Possibility and the German Philosophical Tradition.Michael Oberst - manuscript
    Kant’s postulate of possibility states that possible is whatever agrees with the formal conditions of experience. As has often been noted, this is a definition of real possibility. However, little attention has been paid to the relation of Kantian real possibility to the German philosophical tradition before him. I discuss three kinds of possibility present in this tradition – internal, external, and (Crusian) real possibility – and argue that Kant endorses internal and external possibility. Furthermore, I show, specifically with respect (...)
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  3. Kant on Essence and Nature.Michael Oberst - manuscript
    This paper investigates Kant’s account of “real essence” and of a thing’s “nature”. Notwithstanding their wide negligence in the literature, these concepts belong to the central ones of Kant’s metaphysics. I argue that, on the one hand, Kant is in continuity with the Aristotelian-Scholastic tradition of essence. But, on the other hand, he also follows Locke in distinguishing between “logical” and “real” essence. Contrary to recent attempts of aligning real essence with contemporary approaches to essence, I will defend the thesis (...)
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  4. The Dialectical Illusion in Kant’s Only Possible Argument for the Existence of God.Noam Hoffer - 2020 - Kantian Review 25 (3):339-363.
    The nature of Kant’s criticism of his pre-Critical ‘possibility proof’ for the existence of God, implicit in the account of the Transcendental Ideal in the Critique of Pure Reason, is still under dispute. Two issues are at stake: the error in the proof and diagnosis of the reason for committing it. I offer a new way to connect these issues. In contrast with accounts that locate the motivation for the error in reason’s interest in an unconditioned causal ground of all (...)
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  5. Kant and Frege on Existence.Toni Kannisto - 2018 - Synthese (8):01-26.
    According to what Jonathan Bennett calls the Kant–Frege view of existence, Frege gave solid logical foundations to Kant’s claim that existence is not a real predicate. In this article I will challenge Bennett’s claim by arguing that although Kant and Frege agree on what existence is not, they agree neither on what it is nor on the importance and justification of existential propositions. I identify three main differences: first, whereas for Frege existence is a property of a concept, for Kant (...)
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  6. Nicholas Stang, Kant's Modal Metaphysics. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2018 - Philosophical Review 127 (4):523-528.
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  7. Kant on the Necessity of Causal Relations.Toni Kannisto - 2017 - Kant-Studien 108 (4):495-516.
    There are two traditional ways to read Kant's claim that every event necessarily has a cause: the weaker every-event some-cause and the stronger same-cause same-effect causal principles. The focus of the debate about whether and where he subscribes to the SCP has been in the Analogies in the Critique of Pure Reason and in the Metaphysical Foundations of Natural Science. By analysing the arguments and conclusions of both the Analogies and the Postulates as well as the two Latin principles non (...)
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  8. Nick Stang on Omri Boehm's "Kant's Critique of Spinoza". [REVIEW]Nicholas Stang - 2017 - Critique 2017:N/A.
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  9. Logicism, Possibilism, and the Logic of Kantian Actualism.Andrew Stephenson - 2017 - Critique.
    In this extended critical discussion of 'Kant's Modal Metaphysics' by Nicholas Stang (OUP 2016), I focus on one central issue from the first chapter of the book: Stang’s account of Kant’s doctrine that existence is not a real predicate. In §2 I outline some background. In §§3-4 I present and then elaborate on Stang’s interpretation of Kant’s view that existence is not a real predicate. For Stang, the question of whether existence is a real predicate amounts to the question: ‘could (...)
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  10. The Relation Between God and the World in the Pre-Critical Kant: Was Kant a Spinozist?Noam Hoffer - 2016 - Kantian Review 21 (2):185-210.
    Andrew Chignell and Omri Boehm have recently argued that Kant’s pre-Critical proof for the existence of God entails a Spinozistic conception of God and hence substance monism. The basis for this reading is the assumption common in the literature that God grounds possibilities by exemplifying them. In this article I take issue with this assumption and argue for an alternative Leibnizian reading, according to which possibilities are grounded in essences united in God’s mind (later also described as Platonic ideas intuited (...)
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  11. Positio contra complementum possibilitatis – Kant and Baumgarten on Existence.Toni Kannisto - 2016 - Kant-Studien 107 (2):291-313.
    In the course of his philosophy, in various contexts, Kant comes to reject three theses about existence: (i) that the thoroughgoing determination of a thing implies its existence, (ii) that existence is a real predicate or determination of a thing, and (iii) that existence is the complement of inner possibility or essence. Kant’s target here is Baumgarten, who advocates these theses as the criterion, classification, and definition of existence. In this article I seek to clarify Kant’s elusive theory of existence (...)
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  12. Brandom, Robert. From Empiricism to Expressivism: Brandom Reads Sellars.Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2015. Pp. 289. $35.00. [REVIEW]Colin McLear - 2016 - Ethics 126 (3):808-816.
    One of the better known of the many bons mots of the Sellarsian corpus concerns his definition of philosophy: it is the attempt to understand “how things in the broadest possible sense of the term hang together in the broadest possible sense of the term.” When applied to Sellars’s philosophy in particular, one might be forgiven for doubting the possible success of such an endeavor. Richard Rorty once quipped of Sellars’s followers that they were either “left-wing” or “right-wing,” emphasizing one (...)
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  13. Corrigendum To: Modal Motivations for Noumenal Ignorance: Knowledge, Cognition, and Coherence.Andrew Chignell - 2015 - Kant-Studien:00-00.
    Name der Zeitschrift: Kant-Studien Heft: Ahead of print.
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  14. Kant's Argument That Existence is Not a Determination.Nicholas F. Stang - 2015 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 91 (1):583-626.
    In this paper, I examine Kant's famous objection to the ontological argument: existence is not a determination. Previous commentators have not adequately explained what this claim means, how it undermines the ontological argument, or how Kant argues for it. I argue that the claim that existence is not a determination means that it is not possible for there to be non-existent objects; necessarily, there are only existent objects. I argue further that Kant's target is not merely ontological arguments as such (...)
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  15. Modal Motivations for Noumenal Ignorance: Knowledge, Cognition, and Coherence.Andrew Chignell - 2014 - Kant-Studien 105 (4):573-597.
    My goal in this paper is to show that Kant’s prohibition on certain kinds of knowledge of things-in-themselves is motivated less by his anti-soporific encounter with Hume than by his new view of the distinction between “real” and “logical” modality, a view that developed out of his reflection on the rationalist tradition in which he was trained. In brief: at some point in the 1770’s, Kant came to hold that a necessary condition on knowing a proposition is that one be (...)
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  16. Kant and the ‘Monstrous’ Ground of Possibility: A Reply to Abaci and Yong.Andrew Chignell - 2014 - Kantian Review 19 (1):53-69.
    I reply to recent criticisms by Uygar Abaci and Peter Yong, among others, of my reading of Kant's pre-Critical of God's existence, and of its fate in the Critical period. Along the way I discuss some implications of this debate for our understanding of Kant's modal metaphysics and modal epistemology generally.
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  17. Kant on Formal Modality.Ian S. Blecher - 2013 - Kant-Studien 104 (1):44-62.
    : I propose to explain Kant’s novel claim, in the Critique of Pure Reason, that all judgments have a formal modality. I begin by distinguishing the modality of a judgment’s form from the modality of its content, and I suggest that the former is peculiar in merely affecting the subject’s understanding of his own act of judging. I then contrast the modal account of such an understanding with the traditional, non-modal understanding of it. I conclude by suggesting that Kant prefers (...)
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  18. Modality and Metaphysics in Kant.Toni Kannisto - 2013 - In Stefano Bacin, Alfredo Ferrarin, Claudio La Rocca & Margit Ruffing (eds.), Kant und die Philosophie in weltbürgerlicher Absicht. Akten des XI. Kant-Kongresses 2010. Walter de Gruyter. pp. 633-646.
    In the presentation I will analyse Kant’s conception of modalities and consider its relevance to his critical metaphysics. With his Tables of Judgements and of Categories Kant makes an important division between two kinds of modality, of which the former is only logical and the latter transcendental, i.e., objective. Only judgements that are necessary in both ways are properly metaphysical. This distinction is important for Kant’s distinction between Transcendental Analytic and Transcendental Dialectic, i.e., between acceptable and unacceptable metaphysics. I submit (...)
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  19. Kant, Real Possibility, and the Threat of Spinoza.Andrew Chignell - 2012 - Mind 121 (483):635-675.
    In the first part of the paper I reconstruct Kant’s proof of the existence of a ‘most real being’ while also highlighting the theory of modality that motivates Kant’s departure from Leibniz’s version of the proof. I go on to argue that it is precisely this departure that makes the being that falls out of the pre-critical proof look more like Spinoza’s extended natura naturans than an independent, personal creator-God. In the critical period, Kant seems to think that transcendental idealism (...)
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  20. Real Repugnance and Our Ignorance of Things-in-Themselves: A Lockean Problem in Kant and Hegel.Andrew Chignell - 2010 - Internationales Jahrbuch des Deutschen Idealismus 7:135-159.
    Kant holds that in order to have knowledge of an object, a subject must be able to “prove” that the object is really possible—i.e., prove that there is neither logical inconsistency nor “real repugnance” between its properties. This is (usually) easy to do with respect to empirical objects, but (usually) impossible to do with respect to particular things-in-themselves. In the first section of the paper I argue that an important predecessor of Kant’s account of our ignorance of real possibility can (...)
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  21. Real Repugnance and Belief About Things-in-Themselves: A Problem and Kant's Three Solutions.Andrew Chignell - 2010 - In James Krueger & Benjamin Bruxvoort Lipscomb (eds.), Kant's Moral Metaphysics. Walter DeGruyter.
    Kant says that it can be rational to accept propositions on the basis of non-epistemic or broadly practical considerations, even if those propositions include “transcendental ideas” of supersensible objects. He also worries, however, about how such ideas (of freedom, the soul, noumenal grounds, God, the kingdom of ends, and things-in-themselves generally) acquire genuine positive content in the absence of an appropriate connection to intuitional experience. How can we be sure that the ideas are not empty “thought-entities (Gedankendinge)”—that is, speculative fancies (...)
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  22. Kant's Possibility Proof.Nicholas Stang - 2010 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 27 (3):275-299.
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  23. Kant, Modality, and the Most Real Being.Andrew Chignell - 2009 - Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie 91 (2):157-192.
    Kant's speculative theistic proof rests on a distinction between “logical” and “real” modality that he developed very early in the pre-critical period. The only way to explain facts about real possibility, according to Kant, is to appeal to the properties of a unique, necessary, and “most real” being. Here I reconstruct the proof in its historical context, focusing on the role played by the theory of modality both in motivating the argument (in the pre-critical period) and, ultimately, in undoing it (...)
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  24. A Correspondence Theory of Objects? On Kant's Notions of Truth, Object, and Actuality.Alberto Vanzo - 2008 - History of Philosophy Quarterly 25 (3):259-275.
    Ernst Cassirer claimed that Kant's notion of actual object presupposes the notion of truth. Therefore, Kant cannot define truth as the correspondence of a judgement with an actual object. In this paper, I discuss the relations between Kant's notions of truth, object, and actuality. I argue that's notion of actual object does not presuppose the notion of truth. I conclude that Kant can define truth as the correspondence of a judgement with an actual object.
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  25. A Priori Knowledge in Perspective: Naming, Necessity and the Analytic a Posteriori.Stephen Palmquist - 1987 - Review of Metaphysics 41 (2):255 - 282.
    This is the second in a two part series of articles that attempt to clarify the nature and enduring relevance of Kant's concept of a priori knowledge. (For Part I, see below.) In this article I focus mainly on Saul Kripke's critique of Kant, in Naming and Necessity. I argue that Kripke draws attention to a genuine defect in Kant's epistemological framework, but that he used definitions of certain key terms that were quite different from Kant's definitions. When Kripke's definitions (...)
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