Critique of Judgement Summary

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By andre1499
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The Critique of Judgment, often called the Third Critique, does not have as clear a focus as the first two critiques. In broad outline, Kant sets about examining our faculty of judgment, which leads him down a number of divergent paths. While the Critique of Judgment deals with matters related to science and teleology, it is most remembered for what Kant has to say about aesthetics.

Kant calls aesthetic judgments “judgments of taste” and remarks that, though they are based in an individual’s subjective feelings, they also claim universal validity. Our feelings about beauty differ from our feelings about pleasure and moral goodness in that they are disinterested. We seek to possess pleasurable objects, and we seek to promote moral goodness, but we simply appreciate beauty without feeling driven to find some use for it. Judgments of taste are universal because they are disinterested: our individual wants and needs do not come into play when appreciating beauty, so our aesthetic response applies universally. Aesthetic pleasure comes from the free play between the imagination and understanding when perceiving an object.
Kant distinguishes the beautiful from the sublime. While the appeal of beautiful objects is immediately apparent, the sublime holds an air of mystery and ineffability. While a Greek statue or a pretty flower is beautiful, the movement of storm clouds or a massive building is sublime: they are, in a sense, too great to get our heads around. Kant argues that our sense of the sublime is connected with our faculty of reason, which has ideas of absolute totality and absolute freedom. While storm clouds or a massive building might stretch our minds, they are nothing compared with reason’s ideas of absolute totality and freedom. Apprehending sublime objects puts us in touch with these ideas of reason, so that sublimity resides not in sublime objects…...

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