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Kant on analytic judgements

Currie, Nicholas; (2019) Kant on analytic judgements. Masters thesis (M.Phil.Stud), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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In this thesis I will present and defend an interpretation of Kant’s remarks on analytic judgements in his critical-era texts. Specifically, I will argue that, of the four characterisations of this class of judgements which Kant presents in the Critique of Pure Reason, it is those in terms of (i) conceptual containment and (ii) the identity of concepts (both at A6-7 / B11) which are fundamental, mutually supportive and capable of explaining the other characterisations. In order to motivate this interpretation against long-standing objections, I follow de Jong (1995) and Anderson (2005, 2015) in urging that Kant’s talk of conceptual containment and identity should be understood on the model of similar locutions as they feature in the term logics of his rationalist predecessors, in particular those of Leibniz and Wolff. Furthermore, I will argue that in much the same way that the rationalist models of inter-conceptual containment and identity are used by Leibniz and Wolff to explain the truth of all propositions in purely intensional terms, Kant’s mirror-image account of analytic judgements renders the a prioricity of said judgements a function of just such intensional characteristics. In the second chapter, I will contextualise this interpretation within Kant’s broader account of theoretical judgement in the CPR by explaining the way in which he is able to commensurate this commitment to intensional containment and identity relations with his further commitment to the possibility of distinctively synthetic judgements. In the third and final chapter, I will propose that, for Kant, analyticity is an epistemological property of select judgements, not that which renders those judgements true. In other words, I will urge that for Kant analytic judgements are not true in virtue of concepts but, rather, that their truth is merely knowable a priori by means of the containment and exclusion relations which hold between their constituent concepts.

Type: Thesis (Masters)
Qualification: M.Phil.Stud
Title: Kant on analytic judgements
Event: University College London
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2019. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms.
Keywords: Kant, Analyticity, Analytic / Synthetic Distinction, Judgement, Leibniz, Wolff
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Philosophy
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1571686
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