The constitutional view

Principia: An International Journal of Epistemology 20 (2) (2016)
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This brief paper is devoted to criticizing the widespread reading of Kant’s first Critique, according to which reference to subject-independent objects is “constituted” by higher-order cognitive abilities (concepts). Let us call this the “constitutional view.” In this paper, I argue that the constitutional reading confuses the un-Kantian problem of how we come to represent objects (which I call the intentionality thesis), with the quite different problem of how we cognize (erkennen) (which I call the “cognition thesis”) that we do represent objects, that is, things that exist independently of the subject.

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Roberto Horácio De Pereira
Federal University of Rio de Janeiro


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