Strawson and Kant: Descriptive Metaphysics as Сonceptual Background for the Analysis of “Critique of Pure Reason”

Keywords: descriptive metaphysics, experience, transcendental psychology, transcendental argument, transcendental idealism, empirical realism, space, time, forms of sensuous intuition


The article reveals peculiarities of conceptual analysis of the “Critique of Pure Reason» by British philosopher Peter Strawson. The author claims that this analysis depends on the methodological assumptions and conceptual language of Strawson’s previously published large-scale study (“Individuals…”, 1959). The author confirms Barry Straud`s point that Strawson`s project depends, to some extent, on the descriptive metaphysics of “Critique of Pure Reason”. Strawson`s metaphysical doctrine is based not only on the Kant`s doctrine of subjective forms of space-time (this thesis, in fact, is the limit of Stroud’s approach), but also on some subjects of Kant`s transcendental logic. In particular, it relates to Strawson`s analysis of: (a) the intellectual structures, that actively shape our understanding of the world; (b) the functioning of logic-grammatical forms that provide predication of experience; (c) the transcendental unity of “I” and of the difference between personal and formally-analytical aspects of “I”. Based on “The Bounds of Sense...” (1966) and later Strawson’s articles dealing with the philosophy of Kant, the author proves that: (1) Strawson’s «analytical model» of transcendental argument is based on Kant's transcendental psychology; (2) the modalities of understanding of the transcendental idealism depend on understanding of relation between things in themselves and phenomena i.e. depend on the empirical realism according to Kant; (3) Kant’s sensual intuition suggests, as Strawson has shown, the possibility of other spatial-temporal forms of subjective intuition, which are constitutive for another kinds of experience.

Author Biography

Viktor Kozlovskyi, National University of “Kyiv-Mohyla Akademy”
PhD in philosophy, associate professor of the Department of Philosophy and Religious studies


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Kozlovskyi, V. (2016). Strawson and Kant: Descriptive Metaphysics as Сonceptual Background for the Analysis of “Critique of Pure Reason”. Sententiae, 34(1), 25-41.


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