Event: “Synthesis and Construction in Classical German Philosophy” (München, 11-12 November, 2022)

We are glad to give notice of the conference Synthesis and Construction in Classical German Philosophy. The event will take place at the University of Munich (LMU, Theresienstraße 39, Room: B 046), on November 11th-12th, 2022.

The event is organized by Luis Fellipe Garcia and is founded by Alexander von Humboldt Stiftung.

To register at the conference (online) please use this link.

Below you can find the presentation of the conference and the list of speakers.


Synthesis and construction in Classical German Philosophy
In the Doctrine of Method of the Critique of Pure Reason Kant claims that “all rational cognition is either cognition from concepts or cognition from the construction of concepts”, specifying that “the former is called philosophical, the latter mathematical” (A837 / B865). This suggests that the Critique, which according to Kant proceeds synthetically (4:274–5), does not operate by means of construction. In other words, the synthetic method employed in philosophy should be distinguished from the method of construction, which is rather a feature of mathematical cognition. Yet some authors have argued that the method of construction plays a key role in the Critique of Pure
Reason, by claiming either that objectivity is grounded on logical constructions of the mind (Van Cleve 1999, Rockmore 2016) or that key tenets of Kant’s argument, such as the schematism, cannot be understood independently of the procedure of construction (Ferrarin 1995). Moreover, in his works on natural philosophy Kant seems to conceive of his method as a sort of philosophical construction (Plaass 1964; Förster 2000). Even those who are reluctant to ascribe a constructive method to Kant’s natural philosophy still recognize that it leads to a construction of nature (Friedman 2013). Accordingly, the limits between the synthetic and constructive methods are not as clear-cut as it may seem. The relationship between these procedures is further complicated in the reception of Kant’s philosophy, where authors such as Fichte and Schelling explicitly regard their attempts to elaborate philosophical systems both as synthetic and as involving “philosophical constructions”. Is this method compatible with Kant’s? Does this bring philosophy closer to mathematics? What are the differences between the synthetic and constructive methods? Are there constructivist aspects of transcendental philosophy? The conference aims to discuss these and related issues

The speakers are:

  • Farhad Alavi (Edinburgh University)
  • Daniel Breazeale (University of Kentucky)
  • Henny Blomme (KU Leuven)
  • Karin de Boer (KU Leuven)
  • Luis Fellipe Garcia (LMU / KU Leuven)
  • Stephen Howard (KU Leuven)
  • Catarina Marinelli (LMU / Università degli Studi di Roma Tor Vergata)
  • Dalia Nassar (University of Syndey)
  • Ludovica Neri (LMU / Università di Bologna)
  • François Ottmann (Université de Toulouse)
  • Ives Radrizzani (LMU)
  • Pavel Reichl (KU Leuven)
  • Jelscha Schmid (Universität Basel)
  • Günter Zöller (LMU)

The complete program of the event is available at this link.

For further information please visit the website of the conference.

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