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Reinventing the Mirror: Reconciling Guyer’s and Allison’s Interpretations of Kant’s Second Analogy

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McKenzie Southworth

Lewis & Clark College, US
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Abstract

This paper concerns two interpretations of Kant’s second Analogy in the Critique of Pure Reason. On the one hand, Paul Guyer argues that the goal of the second Analogy is to provide grounds for the confirmation of beliefs about causal relations. Henry Allison, on the other hand, argues that the principle of the second Analogy is a condition of the possibility of experiencing succession, whether subjective or objective. Their starkly different views on the aims and coherence of Kant’s overall system clearly influence their interpretive differences in the specific context of the second Analogy. The exegetical investigation required to evaluate each point of divergence between them is beyond the scope of this paper. Instead, as regards the second Analogy in particular, I focus on one point where Guyer’s position has been misrepresented. Allison characterizes Guyer as equating objective validity with empirical truth. I show that Guyer is equating objective validity with justification, or a claim to knowledge, rather than knowledge itself. Therefore, Allison has misinterpreted Guyer’s interpretation of Kant in this regard.

How to Cite: Southworth, M., 2014. Reinventing the Mirror: Reconciling Guyer’s and Allison’s Interpretations of Kant’s Second Analogy. International Journal of Undergraduate Research and Creative Activities, 6(2), pp.21 (162–168). DOI: http://doi.org/10.7710/2155-4838.1113
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Published on 04 Jun 2014.
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