Kant's Objective Nature Of Cognitive

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Kant’s passage explores the foundations of human cognition. His principal intention was to determine the limits of pure reason and understanding. His ‘grand question’ from the preface to his introduction, The Critique of Pure Reason epitomises ‘what and how much can reason and understanding apart from experience, cognize?’ (Kant et al., n.d.). In other words, he wants to know what reason alone can determine without empiricism. However, Adorno disputes Kant’s main focal point within the passage and argues that he places more emphasis on ‘the objective nature of cognition’ (Adorno and Tiedemann, 2001). A further aim of Kant’s work is to bridge the gap between rationalists and empiricists by suggesting that our knowledge is synthetic a priori. …show more content…
Kant proposes a distinction between the two in the extract (A50-52/B74-76) where he explores the ‘fundamental sources in the mind’; the first being ‘reception of representations’ and the second, ‘the faculty for cognizing an object by means of these representations’. The former of these is sensibility whilst the latter is spontaneity of concepts or understanding. Sensibility is intuition that connects the noumenal world to the phenomenal world through our senses. Therefore, sensibility must be empirical. However, ‘Intuitions can never be other than sensible’ (Kant, Watkins and Pluhar, 1999). Intuitions help to form concepts and so the world as we perceive cannot be a priori if we rely on those senses. This initial connection between the noumenal and phenomenal world is crucial for us to have any concept of the world surrounding us. Concepts which we bring into the phenomenal world through our metaphysical element of consciousness to form objects of understanding must come from an anamnesis of intuitions which were acquired previously through sensibility. Therefore, for a concept or intuition to be a priori, it must be pure or as Kant believes; it must coincide with ‘the matter of sensible cognition’ …show more content…
Whilst understanding exists in the noumenal world. The latter part of this passage is in The Introduction of Transcendental Logic. Kant has numerous ways of providing the distinction between sensibility and understanding. One is in terms of receptivity and spontaneity. Kant claims that sensibility correlates to receptivity, whereas understanding involves spontaneity. Sensibility is our receptive capacity which we are affected by objects around us. Kant states the function of this capacity is to ‘give us objects’ (A50/B74). Sensibility presents the object to oneself thereby triggering a cognition. Contrasting this, Kant holds the view that understanding is a ‘spontaneous’ capacity where the function is to ‘think’ about the object. Understanding processes material from sensibility and determines it into synthetic activity. He argues that sensibility and understanding are distinct because of their different nature and functions. This is provided in the extract ‘these two faculties or capacities cannot exchange their functions’. As he states in the Transcendental Logic, “one must not mix up their roles, rather one has great cause to separate them carefully from each other and distinguish them (A52/B76). On the other hand, Kant commits himself to the view that sensibility and understanding must coincide for us to perceive anything at all. ‘Only from their unification can cognition

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