Transcendental Idealism as the Backdrop for Kant’s Theory of Religion

Stephen Richard Palmquist

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Recent work on Kant’s Religion within the Bounds of Bare Reason1 frequently begins by calling attention to the many unresolved interpretive problems that plague the careful reader of this influential yet perplexing book.2 Because the characteristic features of transcendental idealism do not play an obviously constitutive role in the exposition of Kant’s arguments in this text, for many years most Kant scholars simply passed it over as an optional appendix to his ethics, if not an outright aberration.3 A central focus of the so-called “affirmative” trend in interpreting Religion that has come to the fore over the past twenty years4 has therefore been to argue that these conundrums in Kant’s text are largely resolvable. The present chapter will draw from that recent literature an account of how four key components of Kant’s argument in Religion, often regarded as either incoherent or mistaken, actually make good sense if they are read against the backdrop of his transcendental idealism.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Palgrave Handbook of German Idealism
EditorsMatthew C. Altman
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781137334756
ISBN (Print)9781137334749, 9781349673636
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series

NameThe Palgrave Handbook of German Idealism
ISSN (Print)2634-6230
ISSN (Electronic)2634-6249


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