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PHIL 367 - Midterm Review: Fichte

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McGill University
PHIL 367
Susan Judith Hoffmann

A Fichtes Philosophical ProjectTranscendental Metaphysicswhat are the a priori conditions in the viewer that makes the act of experience observation and action possible The Wissenschaftslehre Doctrine of Science is meant to reconcile freedom with necessity to merge the theoretical and practical worlds of knowledge in Kant How can freely willing morally responsible agents also be part of a causally conditioned material world Beings with subjective spontaneity and freedom yet from this there is an objective necessity and limitation in order to achieve the former Claims in the First Intro that he is explaining the basis of the system of representations accompanied by a feeling of necessity Thing in Itselfa mindindependent external cause of sensations is indefensible on Critical groundsIntellectual IntuitionKants denial of this is justified as a denial of the possibility of any nonsensory awareness of external objects but is difficult to reconcile with other Kantian principles such as the Is immediate presence to itself both as a cognizing subject theoretical and as a striving moral agent practical Believed the first task to be to discover a single selfevident principle upon which a system can be built or derived This principle therefore cannot be established by any sort of reasoning Fichte believed that there are only two starting points for this endeavour the concept of pure selfhood freedom and that of pure thinghood necessity which can only be arrived at at philosophical abstraction from experience The first results in idealism the latter results on dogmatism A system cannot be grounded on two principles so no mix of these two is possible Fichte argued that dogmatism could not explain consciousness Idealism however is able to explain objects representations accompanied by a feeling of necessity in terms of the necessary operations of the intellect itself and make an illicit appeal to things in themselves Therefore one must be convinced of ones own freedom before one can enter into the chain of deductions and arguments that constitute Wissenschaftslehre Proposition the I freely posits itself B Systematic Overview of the Jena Wissenschaftslehre1The FoundationFirst principle the I posits itself as the I selfpositing This is complicated in the First Intro by Fichte attempting to connect it to the law of
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