Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Caird on Kant’s Idealism: Revolutionary or Traditionalist?




The traditionalist interpretation of Kant's idealism reads his Critical philosophy as a version of traditional idealism, à la Berkeley. By contrast, a revolutionary account of Kant will assert the threefold distinction between states of mind, external objects of the world and things in themselves, and will reject the attempt to reduce external objects to states of mind. In this paper, I argue that, while Caird's interpretation is clearly not traditionalist, nor is it obviously revolutionary: he is critical of Kant's threefold distinction, although he fully acknowledges Kant's attempt to uphold this distinction. While arguing for this claim, the paper will examine several classical objections to Kant's Critical philosophy, including the view that things in themselves should be rejected and that Kant's system lacks the unity necessary to account for the variety of distinctions he introduces, including the distinction between phenomena and noumena.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 1, 2012
Publication Date Jan 1, 2013
Journal Collingwood and British Idealism Studies: incorporating Bradley Studies
Print ISSN 1744-9413
Publisher Imprint Academic
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 19
Issue 1
Pages 19 - 45
Publisher URL