8 - H aving shown in outline how concepts give unity to a...

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Having shown in outline how concepts give unity to a manifold of intuition, and pure intuition in particular, I shall now turn to another crucial aspect of concepts. The role of the understanding is to think by means of concepts through the making of judgments. (Kant sometimes calls the human understanding "discursive.") It is only through thinking that we represent objects of experience . An object of experience, for Kant, is not a mere "this," not merely a given intuition, but a "this-such," an intuition which has been conceptualized. We understand something (it becomes an object for us) when we can classify it in some way, e.g. as a figure or a triangle, or an equilateral triangle, by making a judgment which brings the intuition under the concept. Kant states that we must "make our intuitions intelligible, that is, to bring them under concepts" (A51/B75). It must be noted that Kant frequently writes of intuitions as being objects. In defining his key terms, Kant stats that, "An objective perception is cognition ( cognitio ). This is either intution or concept ( intuitus vel conceptus ). The former relates immediately to the object and is single, the latter refers to it mediately by means of a feature which several things have in common." In his opening remarks in the Transcendental Logic, he states that through receptivity "an object is given to us," and through spontaneity, "the object is
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2011 for the course PHILOSOPHY 113 taught by Professor Gerogemattey during the Winter '10 term at UC Davis.

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8 - H aving shown in outline how concepts give unity to a...

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