European Journal of Philosophy 26 (3):945-957 (2018)

Ryan S. Kemp
Wheaton College, Illinois
In the A-preface of the Critique of Pure Reason, Kant kindly warns his readers to pay special attention to the chapter on the “Deduction of the Pure Concepts of the Understanding.” Looking to mitigate the reader's effort, Kant goes on to explain the chapter's methodology, suggesting that the inquiry will have “two sides.” One side deals with the “objective validity” of the pure categories of the understanding; he calls this the “objective deduction.” The other deals with the powers of cognition on which the understanding rests; he calls this the “subjective deduction.” Having gone to such great lengths to outline his method ahead of time, it comes as no small surprise that the actual chapter offers no clear indication of where the two deductions are located. In this essay, I attempt to solve this puzzle. On the way, I engage with both traditional and recent interpretations of the subjective deduction, arguing that they fail—in one way or another—to satisfy the criteria that Kant develops in the preface.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/ejop.12330
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 71,489
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Critique of Pure Reason.I. Kant - 1787/1998 - Philosophy 59 (230):555-557.
Kant, Non-Conceptual Content and the Representation of Space.Lucy Allais - 2009 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 47 (3):pp. 383-413.
Critique of Pure Reason.Günter Zöller - 2002 - Philosophical Review 111 (1):113.

View all 21 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

The Subjective Deduction and Kant’s Methodological Skepticism.Huaping Lu-Adler - 2022 - In Giuseppe Motta, Dennis Schulting & Udo Thiel (eds.), Kant’s Transcendental Deduction and the Theory of Apperception. Berlin, Germany: pp. 341-60.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Kant's Subjective Deduction.Nathan Bauer - 2010 - British Journal for the History of Philosophy 18 (3):433-460.
¿ Dónde está la deducción objetiva de Kant?Gregg Osborne - 2007 - Areté. Revista de Filosofía 19 (1):87-118.
The Proof Structure of Kant's A-Deduction.Michael Barker - 2001 - Kant Studien 92 (3):259-282.
Kant’s Deduction and Apperception: Explaining the Categories.Dennis Schulting - 2012 - London and Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave-Macmillan.
The Two Steps of the B-Deduction.Markku Leppäkoski - 1998 - Kantian Review 2:107-116.
Kant’s Non-Conceptualism, Rogue Objects, and The Gap in the B Deduction.Robert Hanna - 2011 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 19 (3):399 - 415.
Kant, Hume, and Problems of the Deduction of the Categories.V. V. Vasil'ev - 1996 - Russian Studies in Philosophy 34 (4):51-65.


Added to PP index

Total views
29 ( #397,059 of 2,520,804 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #405,623 of 2,520,804 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes