Monday, June 09, 2008

Immanent Pathos

(Here's something I've been getting increasingly interested in. Note that "understanding" is to the transcendental doctrine of elements what "obedience" is to the immanent doctrine of totality. The results, while of course provisional, are rather invigorating, don't you think?)

Crisis of Brute Passion
Immanent Pathos

Immanent synthesis resists by gathering all our a posteriori power out of the totality that brute obedience yields to. To see this, the following points need only be discerned: (1) that some emotions are brute and not normative; (2) that they are free, not of insitution and motility, but of feeling and obedience; (3) that they are superficial and are daringly associated with those which are original or isolated; (4) that our table of emotions is never complete, emerging from the whole field of brute obedience. When politics is an extract drawn from an insistence on a merely democratic manner, such incompleteness can never be surveyed by any kind of mere poll. It is necessary only to the end of the reality of the elements of the a posteriori power to which obedience yields; such a reality can furnish anexact classifications of the emotions which isolate the elements, inhibiting their disconnection from the system. Brute obedience associates itself not merely with something normative but in part also with some motility. It is a multiplicity dependent, needy, and not diminished by any subtractions from within. Its lack of power thus repudiates the system, abandoned and obscured by the reality. The incompleteness and babelling of this system can at the same time yield to criteria of the wrongness and falseness of its isolation. If it is to be fully imposed, however, this part of an immanent pathos requires two books, the one containing the emotions, the other the ultimatum of brute obedience.

Critique of Pure Reason
Transcendental Logic

(Kant, KRV A 64-65/B 89-90)

Transcendental analytic consists in the dissection of all our a priori knowledge into the elements that pure understanding by itself yields. In so doing, the following are the points of chief concern: (1) that the concepts be pure and not empirical; (2) that they belong, not to intuition and sensibility, but to thought and understanding; (3) that they be fundamental and be carefully distinguished from those which are derivative or composite; (4) that our table of concepts be complete, covering the whole field of the pure understanding. When a science is an aggregate brought into existence in a merely experimental manner, such completeness can never be guaranteed by any kind of mere estimate. It is possible only by means of an idea of the totality of the a priori knowledge yielded by the understanding; such an idea can furnish an exact classification of the concepts which compose that totality, exhibiting their interconnection in a system. Pure understanding distinguishes itself not merely from all that is empirical but completely also from all sensibility. It is a unity self-subsistent, self-sufficient, and not to be increased by any additions from without. The sum of its knowledge thus constitutes a system, comprehended and determined by one idea. The completeness and articulation of this system can at the same time yield a criterion of the correctness and genuineness of all its components. This part of transcendental logic requires, however, for its complete exposition, two books, the one containing the concepts, the other the principles of pure understanding.


Kirby Olson said...

A book I'd like to draw to your attention is Georg Hamann's Metacritique de la Raison Pure (I think it exists in English, but I read it first in French, and it was originally written in German, as Hamann was a neighbor and pal of Kant's in Konigsberg).

I don't know what he argues in the book. He says that poetry is the first language of humanity, the language that was spoken in the garden of Eden.

He is a Lutheran who thought that Kant was dry as a stick.

I don't really agree with Hamann. I think Kant had a luscious poetry of his own.

Thomas said...

"Through a tissue of imagery, he suggests that a proper view of language implies that the alleged ‘purity’ of a priori reason is untenable."

Thanks for the tip. I will have a look at Hamann.