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Department of Philosophy: Emily Carson, McGill University

Thursday, March 31, 2022
4:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Watson Hall
Room: Room 517
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The Lorne Maclachlan Lecture on Kant

Emily Carson, McGill University

Thursday, March 31, 2022

4:00-6:00 pm

Watson Hall, Room 517 

Kantian construction in context

In the New Essays, Leibniz contrasted his own account of geometrical demonstration with those, like Locke’s, that appeal to “what images tell us”. This contrast underlies a traditional way of distinguishing rationalists like Leibniz and Wolff from empiricists like Locke. Not surprisingly, the story is not so straightforward. I begin by discussing Wolff, Mendelssohn and Lambert’s views on mathematical demonstration and the role therein for sensibility, imagination, images and/or construction. I argue that these figures are struggling to theorize common challenges, challenges that Kant eventually brings to the fore and explicitly addresses. Kant aims to show that his account of the nature of sensibility can explain the acknowledged roles for construction in geometrical demonstration

Sheena Wilkinson
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