critique of judgment


  • “[10] Kant is inconsistent, according to Schopenhauer, because “…after it had been incessantly repeated in the Critique of Pure Reason that the understanding is the ability
    to judge, and after the forms of its judgements are made the foundation–stone of all philosophy, a quite peculiar power of judgement now appears which is entirely different from that ability.

  • In reflective judgment we seek to find unknown universals for given particulars; whereas in determinative judgment, we just subsume given particulars under universals that
    are already known, as Kant puts it: It is then one thing to say, “the production of certain things of nature or that of collective nature is only possible through a cause which determines itself to action according to design”; and quite another
    to say, “I can according to the peculiar constitution of my cognitive faculties judge concerning the possibility of these things and their production, in no other fashion than by conceiving for this a cause working according to design, i.e.

  • Kant’s view of the beautiful and the sublime is frequently read as an attempt to resolve one of the problems left following his depiction of moral law in the Critique of Practical
    Reason — namely that it is impossible to prove that we have free will, and thus impossible to prove that we are bound under moral law.

  • The end result of this inquiry in the First Critique is that there are certain fundamental antinomies in the dialectical use of Reason, most particularly that there is a complete
    inability to favor on the one hand the argument that all behavior and thought is determined by external causes, and on the other that there is an actual “spontaneous” causal principle at work in human behavior.

  • It is in many ways the absolute opposite of the agreeable, in that it is a purely objective judgment — things are either moral or they are not, according to Kant.

  • The Critical project, that of exploring the limits and conditions of knowledge, had already produced the Critique of Pure Reason, in which Kant argued for a Transcendental
    Aesthetic, an approach to the problems of perception in which space and time are argued not to be objects.

  • The first position, of causal determinism, is adopted, in Kant’s view, by empirical scientists of all sorts; moreover, it led to the Idea (perhaps never fully to be realized)
    of a final science in which all empirical knowledge could be synthesized into a full and complete causal explanation of all events possible to the world.

  • [3] This portion of the Critique is, from some modern theories, where Kant is most radical; he posits man as the ultimate end, that is, that all other forms of nature exist
    for the purpose of their relation to man, directly or not, and that man is left outside of this due to his faculty of reason.

  • In the former case I wish to establish something concerning the Object, and am bound to establish the objective reality of an assumed concept; in the latter, Reason only determines
    the use of my cognitive faculties, conformably to their peculiarities and to the essential conditions of their range and their limits.

  • The judgment that something is beautiful is a claim that it possesses the “form of finality” — that is, that it appears to have been designed with a purpose, even though it
    does not have any apparent practical function.

  • [6] Influences Though Kant consistently maintains that the human mind is not an “intuitive understanding”—something that creates the phenomena which it cognizes—several of
    his readers (starting with Fichte, culminating in Schelling) believed that it must be (and often give Kant credit).

  • Kant makes it clear that these are the only four possible reflective judgments, as he relates them to the Table of Judgments from the Critique of Pure Reason.

  • Man also garners the place as the highest teleological end due to his capacity for morality, or practical reason, which falls in line with the ethical system that Kant proposes
    in the Critique of Practical Reason and the Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals.

  • This way of judging things according to their ends (telos: Greek for end) is logically connected to the first discussion at least regarding beauty but suggests a kind of (self-)
    purposiveness (that is, meaningfulness known by one’s self).

  • The second position, of spontaneous causality, is implicitly adopted by all people as they engage in moral behavior; this position is explored more fully in the Critique of
    Practical Reason.

  • The central concept of Kant’s analysis of the judgment of beauty is what he called the ″free play″ between the cognitive powers of imagination and understanding.

  • Kant says explicitly that while efficiently causal explanations are always best (x causes y, y is the effect of x), it is absurd to hope for “another Newton” who could explain
    a blade of grass without invoking teleology, and so the organic must be explained “as if” it were constituted as teleological.

  • Schopenhauer stated that “[T]hus we have the queer combination of the knowledge of the beautiful with that of the suitableness of natural bodies into one faculty of knowledge
    called power of judgement, and the treatment of the two heterogeneous subjects in one book.

  • However, the judgment that something is beautiful or sublime is made with the belief that other people ought to agree with this judgment — even though it is known that many
    will not.

  • The main difference between these two judgments is that purpose or use of the object plays no role in the case of free beauty.

  • “[11] With regard to teleological judgement, Schopenhauer claimed that Kant tried to say only this: “…although organized bodies necessarily seem to us as though they were
    constructed according to a conception of purpose which preceded them, this still does not justify us in assuming it to be objectively the case.

  • Whereas judgments of free beauty are made without having one determinate concept for the object being judged (e.g.

  • The First Critique argues that space and time provide ways in which the observing subject’s mind organizes and structures the sensory world.

  • Kant’s discussions of schema and symbol late in the first half of the Critique of Judgement also raise questions about the way the mind represents its objects to itself, and
    so are foundational for an understanding of the development of much late 20th-century continental philosophy: Jacques Derrida is known to have studied the book extensively.

  • Aesthetic Judgement The first part of the book discusses the four possible aesthetic reflective judgments: the agreeable, the beautiful, the sublime, and the good.

  • The good is essentially a judgment that something is ethical — the judgment that something conforms with moral law, which, in the Kantian sense, is essentially a claim of
    modality — a coherence with a fixed and absolute notion of reason.

  • “[10] The book’s form is the result of concluding that beauty can be explained by examining the concept of suitableness.

  • The beautiful and the sublime both seem to refer to some external noumenal order — and thus to the possibility of a noumenal self that possesses free will.

  • We also do not need to have a determinate concept for an object in order to find it beautiful (§9).

  • In contrast, adherent judgments of beauty are only possible if the object is not ill-suited for its purpose.

  • Sometimes referred to as the “third critique”, the Critique of Judgment follows the Critique of Pure Reason (1781) and the Critique of Practical Reason (1788).

  • The Critique of Judgment constitutes a discussion of the place of Judgment itself, which must overlap both the Understanding (“Verstand”) (whichsoever operates from within
    a deterministic framework) and Reason (“Vernunft”) (which operates on the grounds of freedom).


Works Cited

[‘1. Kant, Critique of Judgment, section 75.
2. ^ Guyer, Paul (2005). Values of Beauty. New York: Cambridge University Press.
3. ^ Cassirer, H. W. (2020-07-24). A Commentary on Kant’s Critique of Judgement. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-000-15649-2.
4. ^
Use as a regulative principle contrasts to that of a constructive principle.
5. ^ Huneman, Philippe (2007). Understanding Purpose. University of Rochester Press. pp. 1–37. ISBN 978-1-58046-265-5.
6. ^ Copleston, Frederick (1960). A history of
philosophy: the enlightenment Voltaire to Kant, Volume 6. Continuum. pp. 360–361. ISBN 0826469477.”Beauty is the form of the purposefulness of an object, so far as this is perceived without any representation of a purpose.”
7. ^ Gadamer, Hans-Georg
(1960). Truth and Method (2002 ed.). Continuum. p. 36. ISBN 082647697X.
8. ^ Davey, Nicholas (2007). “Gadamer’s Aesthetics”. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
9. ^ Dorstal, Robert (2010). “Review: Gadamer and the Legacy of German Idealism
by Kristin Gjesdal”. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews. University of Notre Dame.
10. ^ Jump up to:a b c The World as Will and Representation, Vol. I, Appendix, p. 531
11. ^ The World as Will and Representation, Vol. I, Appendix, p 531 f.
12. ^
The World as Will and Representation, Vol. I, Appendix, p. 532
2. Immanuel Kant, Critique of Judgment, Translated by J. H. Bernard, New York: Hafner Publishing, 1951. (Original publication date 1892)
3. Immanuel Kant, Critique of Judgement, Translated
by James Creed Meredith, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007 (original publication date 1952), Oxford World’s Classics. ISBN 978-0-19-280617-8. Among the reprints of this translation, in volume 42 of Great Books of the Western World
4. Immanuel
Kant, Critique of Judgement, Translated by Werner S. Pluhar, Hackett Publishing Co., 1987, ISBN 0-87220-025-6
5. Immanuel Kant, Critique of the Power of Judgment, Edited by Paul Guyer, translated by Paul Guyer and Eric Mathews, Cambridge and New
York: Cambridge University Press, 2000. The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Immanuel Kant. ISBN 0-521-34447-6
6. Immanuel Kant, Kritik der Urteilskraft, ed. by Heiner F. Klemme, Felix Meiner Verlag, 2006.
7. Arthur Schopenhauer, The World as
Will and Representation, Volume I, Dover Publications, 1969, ISBN 0-486-21761-2
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