By Dieter Henrich
A set of 4 essays on aesthetic, moral, and political matters by way of Dieter Henrich, the preeminent Kant student in Germany this day.
Read Online or Download Aesthetic Judgment and the Moral Image of the World: Studies in Kant (Studies in Kant and German Idealism) PDF
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Extra resources for Aesthetic Judgment and the Moral Image of the World: Studies in Kant (Studies in Kant and German Idealism)
All along he had noticed that these judgments claim universal agreement and a validity that cannot be supported by decisive reasons. By now he found himself in the position to justify this claim. This doesn't amount to saying that Kant's earlier aesthetics remained entirely unc11anged. Yet the change consisted less in additions to the theorems and innovations within the terminology than in a greater precision in their employment. Previousl)', Kant's reference to a harmonious play of our cognitive faculties had been somewhat vague and flexible.
Thus it proved possible to separate aesthetic judgments from other types of judgments while preserving their claim to originate in reason as such and from activities that are interwoven with the activities on which all 30 I NT E R PRE TAT ION S knowledge of our world depends. These judgments, to be sure, don't express knowledge. But their claim is justified because it is founded upon the same activities from which knowledge originates, albeit in a distinctive, interactive employment. Hence Kant first provided tools for establishing the aesthetic attitude as self-contained and autonomous, thus as the foundation for a conception of art that envisages art as a primordial way of being related to and situated within our world, a way that can neither be replaced nor surpassed by other achievements of man's rational capacities.
Once one realizes that this is precisely the question that has to be answered, a solution of our problem can begin to emerge. That Kant himself must have envisaged such a solution can again be shown by means of passages from the first Introduction. The key term for the solution, which term Kant employs only here in a prominent way within the context of aesthetics, is "exhibition" ("Darstellung," traditionally translated as "presentation"). The introduction of this term into the language of philosophy is one of Kant's many accomplishments.