Leibniz on Innate Ideas and Kant on the Origin of the Categories

Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie 100 (1):19-45 (2018)
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In his essay against Eberhard, Kant denies that there are innate concepts. Several scholars take Kant’s statement at face value. They claim that Kant did not endorse concept innatism, that the categories are not innate concepts, and that Kant’s views on innateness are significantly different from Leibniz’s. This paper takes issue with those claims. It argues that Kant’s views on the origin of the intellectual concepts are remarkably similar to Leibniz’s. Given two widespread notions of innateness, the dispositional notion and the input/output notion, intellectual concepts are innate for Kant no less than for Leibniz.

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