The Paideia Archive: Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 45, 1998

Theory of Knowledge

Andrew Brook, Jennifer McRobert
Pages 41-46

Kant’s Attack on the Amphiboly of the Concepts of Reflection

In the neglected 'Amphiboly of the Concepts of Reflection,' Kant introduces a new transcendental activity, Transcendental Deliberation (Kemp Smith calls it 'Transcendental Reflection'). It aims to determine to which faculty a representation belongs and does so by examining the representation's relationships to other representations. This enterprise yields some powerful ideas. (1) Some of the relationships studied have great interest, numerical identity in particular. Indeed, seeing Kant discuss it here, one wonders why he did not include it in the Table of Categories. (2) Kant gives a solid argument for the necessity of a sensible element in representations, something not found elsewhere in the Transcendental Analytic.