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study guide final

study guide final - #2 A priori= they are judgments that a...

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#2 A priori= they are judgments that a rational being can make without having to go out and gather some particular type of experience first Synthetic judgment is defined as a proposition whose predicate is not already "contained in" the subject--in other words, a proposition whose predicate "amplifies" (adds to) the subject. Example: " Jon's cousin is a bachelor . Now if you'll think this through carefully, I'm sure you'll see that it is very tempting to equate analytic judgments with a priori judgments, and to equate synthetic judgments with a posteriori judgments--right? It's tempting to say "Ok. With analytic judgments, you don't need to go out and get any particular experience to find out the predicate because the predicate is already there, implicitly, in the subject. You just have to unpack the subject. But with synthetic judgments, after you bring the subject to mind, you still can't know that the predicate attaches to it until you go out an discover this through experience." . . . And that is just what Hume thought. He thought that analytic judgments are a priori, and that synthetic judgments are a posteriori. In other words, he thought that synthetic a priori judgments are impossible. Kant said that the proposition "Two plus three is five" is not analytic; it is synthetic. Why? Because to get from "two and three" to "five" we need the additional concept of grouping the two and the three together. So we have amplified, added to, what was already present in the subject. Summing up, Kant agrees with Hume that mathematical propositions are a priori; but unlike Hume, Kant says these mathematical a priori judgments are snythetic . To go from "two and three" to "five" the mind must add the concept of grouping and then recounting the entire group. Hume brackets off knowledge about "relations of ideas" from knowledge about "matters of fact and experience." Math belongs to the former. It is purely a rational construct. So he sets it aside, as something entirely separate from all those things we know through experience, which, for him, means sensory experience.

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