Meier, Reimarus and Kant on Animal Minds

Kantian Review 26 (2):185-208 (2021)
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Abstract

Close attention to Kant’s comments on animal minds has resulted in radically different readings of key passages in Kant. A major disputed text for understanding Kant on animals is his criticism of G. F. Meier’s view in the 1762 ‘False Subtlety of the Four Syllogistic Figures’. In this article, I argue that Kant’s criticism of Meier should be read as an intervention into an ongoing debate between Meier and H. S. Reimarus on animal minds. Specifically, while broadly aligning himself with Reimarus, Kant distinguishes himself from both Meier and Reimarus on the role of judgement in human consciousness.

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Jacob Browning
New York University

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