Re: [xmca] Re: the Strange Situation

From: Andy Blunden <ablunden who-is-at>
Date: Sat Oct 25 2008 - 22:31:59 PDT

I honed in on what you said about Kant, David, only because
what you said about Hegel seemed spot on. It was your
phrase: "Kantian reflections of unknowable 'things in
themselves'" which I objected to.

Once you're on top of Marx or Hegel, especially if you know
about 20th century science, it is easy to trash Kant, but if
you take account of what was not know in 1800 (in the light
of what is known in 2000), then Kant has to be given some
credit. The idea of a thing-in-itself which is unknowable,
is commensurate with the subject which is also a "nothing"
simply the subject to which thoughts and actions are
predicated. This opens the way for a constructivist theory
of knowledge and science. In a sense Kant can be criticised
for not going far enough, because there were some things
which in 1800 they *thought* they knew, which in fact they
didn't, notably Euclidean geometry.


David Kellogg wrote:
> I'm COMPLETELY lost here. My post had nothing to do with the word
> "reflect" or "mirror" or with any particular word. It didn't have very
> much to do with Kant, either.
> I was trying to see to what extent the categories we find in Chapter
> Five of Thinking and Speech could be seen as coming directly from
> Hegel's Logic. That's all.
> As I see it, the real target in Chapter Five and especially in Chapter
> Two is not Kant but Piaget. And as I see it, the real connection between
> Kant and Piaget is not the word "mirror" or the word "reflect" or even
> the word "schema" (though Kant DOES use all of these words). It's not
> any particular word at all, but rather an idea.
> To make a short story long, the idea is this one:
> "For we have there seen that conceptions are quite impossible, and
> utterly without signification, unless either to them, or at least to the
> elements of which they consist, an object be given; and that,
> consequently, they cannot possibly apply to objects as things in
> themselves without regard to the question whether and how these may be
> given to us; and, further, that the only manner in which objects can be
> given to us is by means of the modification of our sensibility; and,
> finally, that pure /a priori/ conceptions, in addition to the function
> of the understanding in the category, must contain /a priori/ formal
> conditions of sensibility (of the internal sense, namely), which again
> contain the general condition under which alone the category can be
> applied to any object. This formal and pure condition of sensibility, to
> which the conception oand f the understanding is restricted in its
> employment, we shall name the schema of the conception of the he
> schunderstanding, and the procedure of the understanding with these
> schemata we shall call tematism of the pure understanding."
> I don't think even Andy would argue that this was never expressed by
> Kant. Who but Kant can give us such a tenuous grasp of the obvious?
> David Kellogg
> Seoul National University of Education

Andy Blunden +61 3 9380 9435 
Skype andy.blunden
Hegel's Logic with a Foreword by Andy Blunden:
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Received on Sat Oct 25 22:37:56 2008

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