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Janum Sethi
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
  1. ‘For Me, In My Present State’: Kant on Judgments of Perception and Mere Subjective Validity.Janum Sethi - 2020 - Journal of Modern Philosophy 2 (9):20.
    Few of Kant’s distinctions have generated as much puzzlement and criticism as the one he draws in the Prolegomena between judgments of experience, which he describes as objectively and universally valid, and judgments of perception, which he says are merely subjectively valid. Yet the distinction between objective and subjective validity is central to Kant’s account of experience and plays a key role in his Transcendental Deduction of the categories. In this paper, I reject a standard interpretation of the distinction, according (...)
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  2. Two Feelings in the Beautiful: Kant on the Structure of Judgments of Beauty.Janum Sethi - 2019 - Philosophers' Imprint 19 (34):1-17.
    In this paper, I propose a solution to a notorious puzzle that lies at the heart of Kant’s Critique of Judgment. The puzzle arises because Kant asserts two apparently conflicting claims: (1) F→J: A judgment of beauty is aesthetic, i.e., grounded in feeling. (2) J→F: A judgment of beauty could not be based on and must ground the feeling of pleasure in the beautiful. I argue that (1) and (2) are consistent. Kant’s text indicates that he distinguishes two feelings: the (...)
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  3. Kant on Empirical Self-Consciousness.Janum Sethi - 2024 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 102 (1):79-99.
    Kant is said to be the first to distinguish between consciousness of oneself as the subject of one’s experiences and consciousness of oneself as an object, which he calls transcendental and empirical apperception, respectively. Of these, it is empirical apperception that is meant to enable consciousness of any empirical features of oneself; what this amounts to, however, continues to puzzle interpreters. I argue that a key to understanding what empirical apperception consists in is Kant’s claim that each type of apperception (...)
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  4. Is it the Understanding or the Imagination that Synthesizes?Janum Sethi - 2022 - Kant Studien 113 (3):535-554.
    A common reading of Kant’s notion of synthesis takes it to be carried out by the imagination in a manner guided by the concepts of the understanding. I point to a significant problem for this reading: it is the reproductive imagination that carries out the syntheses of apprehension and reproduction, and Kant claims repeatedly that the reproductive imagination is governed solely by its own laws of association. In light of this, I argue for a different division of the labor of (...)
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  5. Kant on Common Sense and Empirical Concepts.Janum Sethi - 2022 - Kantian Review 27 (2):257-277.
    Kant’s notion of common sense (Gemeinsinn) is crucial not only for his account of judgements of beauty, but also for the link he draws between the necessary conditions of such judgements and cognition in general. Contrary to existing interpretations which connect common sense to pleasure, I argue that it should be understood as the capacity to sense the harmony of the cognitive faculties through a sui generis sensation distinct from pleasure. This sensed harmony of the faculties is not only the (...)
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    Subjective Validity, Self-Consciousness and Inner Experience: Comments on Kraus.Janum Sethi - 2022 - Kantian Review 27 (3):461-467.
    I raise three related objections to aspects of Katharina Kraus’s interpretation in Kant on Self-Knowledge and Self-Formation. First, I reject her claim that representations count as merely subjectively valid for Kant if they represent objects from the contingent perspective of a particular subject. I argue that Kant in fact describes consciousness of subjectively valid representations as consciousness of one’s own perceptions rather than of the objects perceived, and therefore that it plays a bigger role in his account of self-consciousness than (...)
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    Watkins on Kant’s Laws of Nature.Janum Sethi - 2021 - Kantian Review 26 (2):307-314.
    I discuss three sets of worries concerning Watkins’ account of laws of nature in Kant on Laws. First, I argue contra Watkins that Kant’s laws of nature do not depend on acts of prescription in any literal sense. Second, I question how his generic conception of laws applies to empirical laws of nature and suggest that the worries about unknowability or contingency that he raises for contemporary alternatives may equally arise for empirical laws on Kant’s account. Finally, I discuss his (...)
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    Kant and the Philosophy of Mind: Perception, Reason, and the Self eds. by Anil Gomes and Andrew Stephenson.Janum Sethi - 2018 - Journal of the History of Philosophy 56 (3):568-569.
    In his useful introduction, Gomes makes clear that a relatively modest claim animates this excellent collection of essays. The editors do not seek to establish that Kant should primarily be seen as a philosopher of mind, but rather, quite simply, that his broader philosophical project requires that he be "engaged in the philosophy of mind". This has allowed them to gather together essays that advance the debate on issues that, quite independently of their classification, have been the subject of much (...)
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