1. Hyper-Physical Influence and Pre-Established Intellectual Harmony in Kant's Letter to Herz (2018, History of Philosophy Quarterly 35:3, pp.259-277)

In a famous letter to Marcus Herz, Kant raises the question ‘how my understanding is supposed to form concepts of objects, themselves completely a priori, with which necessarily the things are supposed to agree’ (10:131). He also mentions two possible answers to this question: the theory of hyper-physical influence, which he ascribes to Malebranche, and the theory of pre-established intellectual harmony, which he ascribes to Crusius.  I argue that the theories of hyper-physical influence and pre-established intellectual harmony have been widely misinterpreted, as have Kant’s objections to them.  In particular, I argue that when Kant claims that an appeal to these theories is viciously circular, what he means is not, as historians have typically assumed, that these are metaphysical theories, and cannot therefore be used to defend the possibility of metaphysics.  My alternative interpretation of Kant’s objection allows us to see him as responding to specific arguments in the works of Crusius and Malebranche.  It also allows us to see the vicious circularity that Kant ascribes to these philosophers as one that he himself avoids in the Critique of Pure Reason.

A draft will beavailable shortly.

 

2. Kant's Transcendental Deduction, Non-Conceptualism, and the Fitness-for-Purpose Objection (2018. Kantian Review 23:1, pp.65-88)

The subject of this article is a powerful objection to the non-conceptualist interpretation of Kant’s transcendental deduction of the categories. Part of the purpose of the deduction is to refute the sort of scepticism according to which there are no objects of empirical intuition that instantiate the categories. But if the non-conceptualist interpretation is correct, it does not follow from what Kant is arguing in the transcendental deduction that this sort of scepticism is false. This article explains and assesses a number of possible responses to this objection.

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3. The Location of Kant's Refutation of Idealism (2017, European Journal of Philosophy 25:4, pp.1640-1659)

Many philosophers have been puzzled by Kant’s decision to insert the Refutation of Idealism into the second edition of the first Critique at the end of his elucidation of the Second Postulate. This article proposes a solution to the puzzle. It defends an explanation for the location of Kant’s Refutation of Idealism that is plausibly expressed by Kant’s claim at the end of his elucidation of the Second Postulate that the Refutation of Idealism is ‘here in its right place’ because ‘[a] powerful objection against these rules for proving existence indirectly is made by idealism’ (B274). According to this explanation, the Refutation of Idealism is Kant’s response to the objection that the Second Postulate must be false since otherwise idealism is true. This article also considers and rejects a number of alternative explanations for the location of Kant’s Refutation of Idealism.

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4. Three Myths about Kant's Second Antinomy (forthcoming in Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie)

This paper challenges three widespread assumptions about Kant's argument for the antithesis of the Second Antinomy, which is the claim that '[n]o composite thing in the world consists of simple parts, and nothing simple exists anywhere in the world' (A435/B463).  The first assumption is that Kant's argument for the antithesis consists of an argument for the claim that '[n]o composite thing in the world consists of simple parts' and a logically independent argument for the claim that 'nothing simple exists anywhere in the world'.  The second assumption is that Kant's argument for the claim that '[n]o composite thing in the world consists of simple parts' is concerned only with spatially extended composite things.  And the third assumption is that Kant's argument for this claim turns on a principle regarding the relationship between the size of the extension of a composite thing and the sizes of the extensions of the things of which it consists. 

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5. Critical review of Dennis Schulting's Kant's Radical Subjectivism: Perspectives on the Transcendental Deduction (2017,  Critique)

Link to reviewLink to author's response.

 

6. Review of Samuel C. Rickless' Berkeley's Argument for Idealism (2016, European Journal of Philosophy 24:4, pp.988-992)

Link to review .

 

7. Review of David Landy's Kant's Inferentialism: The Case Against Hume (forthcoming in British Journal for the History of Philosophy)

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