Notes on Deleuze, G. (2008) Kant's Critical Philosophy. H Tomlinson and B Habberjam (Trans.) London: Continuum International Publishing Group.

Dave Harris

[I find Kant particulalry inaccessible so I have not tried to read any original Kant before tackling this. The same goes for Deleuze's commentaries on Liebniz and Spinoza, although I did manage to read some Bergson, Nietzsche and Hume. I am in no position to comment on the representativeness of Deleuze's reading. On the face of it it looks like a very through and consistent reading, attempting to systematise and obviously focusing on themes of particular interest. It is particularly hard for me to grasp the agenda that Kant is following, the problems he is offering solutions to. It is obviously about trying to pinn down what is unique to human reasoning and is working in and transcending earlier philosophers: this in turn involves familiar problems of giving less general accounts their due but then having to speculate about relations between them. Here it all gets very circular, or maybe abductive, as with transcendental arguments as a whole, which is Deleuze's objection to them -- they must smuggle in some notion of human consciousness as the model for transcendental schemes. I couldn't help thinking of Bourdieu throughout especially with the emphases on higher forms of reason and so on which MUST involve unacknowledged social elitism]

Preface by Deleuze

[Very useful summary really of the main points for Deleuze, but you have to trust him. The usefulness is only apparent at the end of slogging through the arguments really]

There are four 'poetic formulas' (vii): Hamlet argued that the time is out of joint, time is unhinged, time is no longer subordinate to particular points through which movements pass, as in ancient philosophy. Now, movement is subordinate and this changes the notion of movement: it is conditioned by time. Time is no longer a matter of successive movement because succession itself concerns things and movements in time — if time is confined to succession, succession itself would indicate some other time and so on [a kind of applied transcendental deduction, but admitted this time to lead to infinity?]. Things therefore exist in the same [overall] time even though they succeed each other. This affects notions of permanence and simultaneity as well as succession — all assume a relationship of time. Time therefore becomes 'an immutable Form which does not change '(viii) while things change within it. It is not so much eternal as immutable, autonomous, and this argument forced Kant to redefine it.

The second formula is '"I is another"', from Rimbaud. The argument begins by explaining that the Ego is in time and is changing, passively or receiving changes in time. It is also an act of synthesis of things which happen in time, for example dividing events into present past and future. There is therefore an I and an Ego, related but also different. This counters Descartes because he confuses the I that thinks with the I that is without explaining how one determines the other. On the contrary, the I that is is determined by time. The implication is that it cannot be a unique and active subject but rather a passive Ego that appears to itself as actively thinking, an Other. It is the form of time that splits the I from the Ego, but the I affects this form, synthesizes it and this in turn affects the Ego. The I and the Ego are related to each other by these processes. It is to do with time in general, and describes 'an infinite modulation'. This synthesis of time 'moves into the subject', making the Ego a subject. Time appears as a form of interiority and becomes contrasted with space as a form of exteriority. This interiority means we are constantly split into two, endlessly, 'a giddiness, an oscillation which constitutes [subjective?] Time' (ix).

The third formula is found especially in the Critique of Practical Reason [CPR2] and terms on the relation between the good and the law. In antiquity, laws were not necessary because people knew what was good, and it was only when this state declined that we required law, as an imitation of the Good. However for Kant, it is the reverse, and the good depends on the law.

The actual term is the 'subjective law'[making a parallel with subjective time?]. This implies that the law is pure form without an object [necessary if it is to be separate from the good?]. This means it is 'neither sensible nor intelligible'(x) [we come to this sort of argument quite a lot later, that humans cannot know the full details of forms only phenomena]. This leads to the idea that we must conform to subjective rules in a particular way — the famous argument that action is moral if it can be 'thought without contradiction as universal', so lies cannot be universal since this implies that some people will believe them sincerely. The emphasis is not on objects to be pursued but on forms which will be moral, 'the law as empty form' just as time is pure form. Laws provide us with a moral imperative but we must deduce what to do from a notion of the good — but that in turn is a practical matter, depending on the law [and ultimately social practice?]. The main way in which we realize the effect of the law is through experiencing guilt as a continuing 'moral thread' [again rather like the endless distinctions between I and Ego with time?]

The fourth formula might be the one found in the third critique. As we shall see, in the first two critiques the different faculties are related together and regulated by one which is dominant. Thus the faculties which include 'external sense, in a sense, imagination, understanding, reason' are all regulated in the Critique of Pure Reason [CPR] by understanding which determined inner sense via a synthesis of the imagination: even reason was subordinate. However, in the Critique of Practical Reason [CPR2], reason was dominant because it constituted universality, of the law in this case, providing a kind of pure object which the other faculties had to relate to — applying the law, sensing the consequences of a sanction.

However, in the later critique[ Critique of Judgment CJ], these regulated relationships [transcendentally?] suggest a set of free and unregulated relationships, 'where each goes to its own limit and nevertheless shows the possibility of some sort of harmony with the others' (xi). This is Kantian Romanticism. This takes the form of an aesthetic of the Beautiful and the Sublime, where the sensible is not related to other objects or to logic, but has a validity in itself, beyond logic. This will help it grasp time itself and its effects, unregulated by mechanisms, not like the way in which the Ego and the I are related but rather following 'Pathos' permitting strange combinations, arbitrary forms of intuitions, with implications for time itself [which I haven't seen yet].

Apparently, phenomena which come to define the Beautiful provide 'an autonomous supplementary dimension to the inner sense of time' [we feel they are somehow outside of time?]  and this in turn enables the imagination to reflect freely, and the understanding to develop 'an infinite conceptual power'. The faculties become related but not in a relation of dominance: there are no rules, but rather 'a spontaneous accord of the Ego and the I under the conditions of a beautiful nature'. We have more than the logic of the sensible in CPR2, where the sensible was a quality connected to an object in space and time. It is a new aesthetic of the Beautiful and the Sublime, beyond all logic which can somehow grasp time itself 'in its surging forth, in the very origin of its thread and its giddiness' (xi). We are not talking about affects here which conventionally relate the Ego to the I in a regulated relationship: pathos [= 'appeal to the emotions'?]  involves free evolution and strange combinations,  even 'arbitrary forms of possible intuitions'.

How do phenomena which define the beautiful provide this autonomy to  inner time, this power of free reflection to imagination or infinite conceptual power to understanding? The Beautiful seems to suggest some immediate undetermined accord between the faculties, something spontaneous [classic effect of the bourgeois habitus as Bourdieu says] . The Sublime produces a struggle between the various faculties, pushing each other towards a limit, producing 'an inspiration which it would not have had alone', going beyond the limits. There is a struggle between imagination and reason, and between understanding and inner sense. Apparently this is punctuated by episodes which include 'two forms of the Sublime and then Genius'. The faculties confront each other and finally agree but in a 'fundamental discord'.

The earlier critiques involved separation and then accord, but here we end with discord, although somehow this also 'produces accord' (xii). This was to 'define future philosophy', just as for Rimbaud the disorder of the senses defined the poetry of the future [another parallel that is suggested is new music as discord].

Introduction: the transcendental method


Philosophy involves the relation of all knowledge to the essential ends of human reason according to CPR. These ends form the system of culture. There is a critique of empiricism and dogmatic rationalism involved here.

For empiricism, reason is not a faculty of ends in themselves, which come from a basic affectivity or nature, which we share with animals. Culture is therefore 'trick, calculation, detour' (1). Reason is a way of realizing the ends, through different 'indirect, oblique means'. Means can transform ends, but they belong ultimately to nature. For Kant, however, there are ends proper to culture and to reason, and these are less 'conditioned' than those produced by nature, that is capable of being 'absolutely final' [sacred in Durkheim's sense?]

This is argued in three ways: [argument from value]  if we only follow the ends of nature, reason would not be superior to animality and not relate to a higher utility [classic argument where the characteristics are smuggled in at the beginning as desirable]; nature would work better by making us follow instinct rather than reason ['argument from the absurd']; since human beings are clearly moral species as well as natural ones, with different ends from each, as in the notion of maturity, reason cannot just be a simple faculty ['argument from conflict'-- this is the basis of the transcendental deduction that there must be some higher process to explain and resolve conflict?].

In rationalism, a rational being pursues rational ends, but the end of reason is still seen as something external or superior, some overall Good. With this notion of an external end, rationalism is similar to empiricism, with ends external to the will. Both suggest that any willing design to achieve these ends will produce pleasure, and pleasure itself is seen as something that can be known empirically, and something that feeds back to the same life force [no notion of higher pleasures for them then? Would apply to Spinoza's ethics?].

For Kant, supreme ends are still ends of reason, and can be seen to posit nothing other than reason. Reason may have different interests, but it is the only judge of these interests. Experience or any external authority are not sufficient to justify reason, and reason itself must be critical towards any external claims. This sort of immanent critique, 'reason as the judge of reason', provides the transcendental method [working out what would be reasonable to conclude about reason?] which sets out to determine the true nature of reason's interests or ends, and the means of realizing these interests.

First sense of the word faculty

Every representation must be related to an object and to a subject other than itself. These relations indicate the presence of a faculty of mind, as many as there are types of relation. In the first example, a representation is related to an object because it agrees with or conforms to it and this provides the simplest 'faculty of knowledge'. Secondly, representations may be seen as having a causal relation with their objects, the 'faculty of desire' [oddly, desire causes the reality of objects] (3). Even impossible desires indicate this underlying causal process. Even when we know we will never achieve our desires, we still make continuous efforts, as in the example of superstition. Thirdly, representations can be related to subjects, affecting subjects through the faculty of feelings of pleasure and pain, which either increases or decreases their life force [similar to Spinoza?].

In practice, the faculties may be intertwined, pleasure with desire, and both with knowledge and so on. However, camps philosophical task is to pursue [transcendental enquiry] — are there any higher forms for each faculty, detectable in an underlying principle found in the terms which define the lower faculties. If there are such higher forms, we can get to the law governing the exercise of the faculty. This in turn implies that faculties are autonomous. Each caps critique begins with this question, whether there are higher faculties of knowledge, desire, or pleasure and pain. [So what drives this transcendental interest? Some kind of lingering theological legacy? A purely technical interest in explaining apparent conflicts and inadequacies? The decision to pursue questions earlier philosophers had asked?].

Higher faculty of knowledge

Representation on its own does not form adequate knowledge. We need to go beyond immediate representations, perhaps to link in other representations [the technical interest seems to be dominant here]. Knowledge therefore involves a synthesis of representation, something that may be initially outside a concept but which can be attached to it. The synthesis is in the two famous forms, arising from experience a postierori, or a priori , where we assert that something is necessarily and universally linked, independent of any experience, although it may be applied to experience. Cause is an a priori concept not the result of induction, although we can recognize it in experience.

If the synthesis is only empirical, the ordinary faculty of knowledge applies, and experience will do. But the a priori synthesis is a higher faculty, [higher does not just mean transcendental here? Some cognitive superiority is implied, or some legislative hierarchy?] no longer totally governed by the objects to which it applies, not just an empirical generalization or law. It is the a priori synthesis which suggests a property to the object that was not originally contained in the empirical representation. It follows that objects must be open to the effects of the faculty of knowledge. Indeed the faculty of knowledge, having established its own laws can legislate over what objects of knowledge actually are [convoluted and breathless argument, veering between empiricism and idealism?].

This reveals an interest of Reason because rational knowledge and a priori knowledge are '"identical"' (4) [philosophers are superior to mere empiricists, including socially]. The theoretical sciences of reason depend on synthetic a priori judgements as principles. In other words, 'reason has a natural speculative interest' in the objects it defines as subject to it [handily circular?]. It follows that these objects cannot just be things in themselves because our higher faculty would never be able to govern those [ignorant of how science actually does govern things?] . It follows that we can only be interested in phenomena, objects that we experience but which are not revealed to us solely by experience. This also implies that we are not just interested in speculating about pure categories [except when we get to aesthetics?]

Higher faculty of desire

Representations here determine our will [to act]. There is no simple hierarchy between a priori representations and a posteriori ones here, because both determine the will, and do so through producing a pleasure linked to an object. There can only be a posteriori syntheses here, and so the faculty of desire must remain in a lower state.

[But this will not daunt our transcendental philosopher of course] we may be able to represent not objects but forms. We can do this by taking objects of the will and abstracting them from the operations of the will leaving only '"the mere form of giving universal law]' (5) [maybe]. The operations of the law will involve the desirable a priori syntheses again, not just empirical flows of pleasure. This also grants the faculty of desire in its higher form an autonomy [obviously opens the door to higher pleasures permitting all sorts of social distinctions and so on, as in Bourdieu and the contempt the pleasures of the body].

We see this best in the moral law which is reason by itself [after he has defined it that way] , not requiring intermediary forms of pleasure and pain to affect the will [as with ordinary folk] . By linking to moral action, we see that the higher faculty of desire also has a practical interest, not just an empirical or speculative one [to be discussed later, apparently].

Overall we can see that there must be interests of reason which are not natural. There is an 'organic and hierarchical system' forming the 'ends of a rational being' (6). It would be quite wrong to overemphasize the speculative interest, as the rationalists do [also picked up in Bergson], because this restricts reason to only one of its interests, and fails to locate 'the real ends of speculation'. We must retain instead the idea of 'systematic plurality (and a hierarchy) of interests', and this dominates the method, rendered here as offering a true principle 'of a system of ends'.

Second sense of the word faculty

We've seen that the different faculties are related to specific sources of representation, and this provides a list which includes: intuition, based on sensibility which helps us relate to an object of experience immediately; concept, where we relate to an object of experience through other representations, developing understanding; idea, a concept which goes beyond experience and which is based in reason in the most general sense.

We now need to further discuss what a representation is, and how it differs from what is presented. Initially the object as it appears is presented, but this in turn really involves the presentation or intuitive grasp of 'the phenomenon in a sensible empirical diversity' (7). There is an active sense of appearing in the idea of a phenomenon here, appearing which can take different possible forms. We can generalize from these possible forms to arrive at 'pure forms' of intuition or sensibility — space and time. These will include an a priori element, stressing the pure diversity of space and time themselves, and this is the only a priori element in sensibility. [The emphasis seems to be the other way about for me, that even sensibility must include some a priori element, the pure form of space and time which can be transcendentally deduced from sensibilities? — Although this seems to imply that ordinary people can do it themselves in this case, that we all agree etc?]

Actually, intuition is not a representation itself, since that always involves an additional and separate  'active taking up of that which is presented' (7) [especially if it requires to be semiotised]. In this way, representation already involves knowledge, a synthesis. Intuitive sensibility is really 'a faculty of reception'. Synthesis always refers to imagination, understanding and reason, which each convey activity, unity, and totality respectively. These last three are the active faculties: they provide synthesis, and also specific representations which can be dealt with by the other faculties. This combination of one passive and three active faculties makes up 'our constitution' as humans.

Relation between the two senses of the word faculty

The higher faculties are autonomous and legislative, driven by an interest of reason. But this raises the second question how interests of reason are actually realized, how they managed to subject objects and perform legislation. This will require the faculties in the second sense — since reason itself cannot be left to realize its own interests.

Thus CPR starts with discovering the higher faculty of knowledge, the speculative interest of reason and shows how this interest interprets ['subjects'] phenomena. There must be a second faculty however to realize this interest and perform this subjection, something that legislates within the faculty of knowledge. The answer is that this must be understanding, which both legislates and restricts the speculative interests of reason. However it is different in different dimensions. With the higher faculty of desire reason itself must legislate. [One of those philosophical 'musts' we know and love — must to make it all consistent?].

The legislative activity does not suppress all other faculties. Understanding still leaves a role for imagination and reason, although it subordinates these to the tasks set by the understanding, and so on with the other faculties. One of the faculties takes on 'chairmanship' which regulates the other interreactions. This will vary according to the different interests of reason. In other words in each faculty of knowledge, desire, pleasure and pain, there will be a certain relationship relating to the second kind of faculty — imagination, understanding, reason. In this way we build up a whole network for the transcendental method.

Chapter 1 The relationship of the faculties in the Critique of Pure Reason

A priori and transcendental

The a priori must involve necessity and universality, independent of experience. Words like all, always, necessarily, 'or even "tomorrow"' (10) do not derive from experience but are applicable to it. Using words like this supplies more than what is given to us in experience. We can see the influence of Hume here.

The first question is what is the fact of knowledge [quid facti]. This must involve a priori representations [so we can judge what is knowledge or not?]. These may be simple presentations like space and time, or a priori intuitions, which are not empirical or relate to particular contents given in experience. They may also be representations in the strict sense, notions like substance and cause, a priori concepts which again are not the same as empirical concepts. When we ask questions about the facts of knowledge we are doing metaphysics, metaphysical exposition for example of space and time, and metaphysical deductions arising from the use of a priori concepts as categories, following from forms of judgement.

Going beyond experience involves principles which are necessarily subjective, since they cannot just be based on what is given. We must also have the chance to exercise these principles, as in fulfilling predictions about what will happen tomorrow. This in turn implies that experience can confirm and indeed give substance to these principles. The given of experience is therefore subject to principles as well — the sun must rise regularly, objects must present consistent properties and so on, in order to make experience a useful way to test concepts. This actually involves a break with Hume, who saw principles as rooted in human nature, psychology [and culture]. Kant extends the notion of principles to nature as well — hence subjectivity is transcendental [to be deduced as well as meaning transcending just human subjectivity?].

There is another question, this time of right [quid juris]. This turns on why a priori representations are necessarily applicable to experience, why the given which our experience presents to us is subject to the same principles as those which govern our own representations a priori [and therefore the given is subject to these human representations?]. The assumption that the principles are the same is called the transcendental principle. Metaphysical exposition of space and time must be followed by a transcendental exposition, metaphysical deduction by transcendental deduction — hence 'transcendental' covers the subjection of what is given to a priori representations which must necessarily be applied to experience [transcendental in a hierarchical sense, overarching, explaining or accounting for both subjective and natural principles?].

The Copernican revolution

Rationalism assumed that knowledge showed there was a correspondence between subject and object, some general accord between ideas and things, something final and indeed God-given. Strangely, Hume arrived at similar conclusions, assuming some preestablished harmony between the principles of nature and those of human nature. Kant was to disagree via what he called the Copernican revolution: there could be no final accord, only a necessary one between objects and subjects, knowledge is legislative. This gives new powers to the rational being — 'it is we who are giving the orders' (12). Wisdom used to be a matter of submitting to the final accord with nature, but for Kant it is the opposite way around, and we are the legislators. However, this is not just subjective idealism: phenomena are not just appearances produced by our own activity, and can actually affect us, because we are also passive and receptive. They are not things in themselves and so we can subject [dominate] them, assuming some active faculty in humans as well. The whole question becomes an internal one, a relation between subjective faculties which can be either receptive or active.

Synthesis and the legislative understanding

Representation involves a synthesis of something which is presented, so it contains a necessary diversity. This is first apprehended as a manifold in a particular space and time, which reconstruct as particulars of something more general. This in turn implies that space and time are also diverse [so they need to be represented?]. Syntheses are both apprehension and reproduction, always an act of the imagination, but how does that constitute knowledge? Knowledge also implies consciousness, a single consciousness which can link together all the representations. We are not yet talking about self-consciousness, since knowledge always involves a necessary relation to an object — is not just a conscious act of synthesizing, but also it requires relation to an object in the form of recognition.

The two aspects of knowledge are connected however. Conscious unity of representations is only possible if the manifold in question is also related to the object [no entirely imaginary unities?]. This in turn requires 'objectivity as a form in general' (14). Just as the unifying activities of consciousness is represented as thinking, so formal objectification is an expression of thought as well [handy — seems like some kind of transcendental deduction again working back from the diversity of what is presented by objects].

This comes from understanding and is the special responsibility of understanding, noticing that thinking involves both subjective and objective dimensions. The understanding constructs categories, a priori concepts which are both representations of consciousness and predicates of the object in general. These categories [are rather unusual] do not cover descriptions like the colour of an object, since that can vary: what does not vary is that objects must be 'necessarily substance, cause and effect of something else'[in other words categories already presuppose universality and unity]: this is necessary to develop knowledge. Thus, understandings are not just matters of synthesis but 'the unity of synthesis and the expressions of that unity' [so the issues are settled by coining terms that just solve matters like the tensions between subjective and objective]. Since phenomena are necessarily subject to the categories [!] we become the legislators of nature.

It is not just that we can assert that phenomena just are subject to space and time — that they appear implies that they are immediately in space and time [and the implication arises from understanding and knowledge?]. Phenomena can appear to us in sensibility and intuition, but we have to add a priori concepts to develop space and time in a pure state. We do not deduce the existence of space and time, but expound it, transcendentally [that is assume some transcendental process and go on to describe how it might work?]. That in turn depends on a mediator, a synthesis which relates phenomena to an active faculty. The imagination does not legislate but embodies the mediation and brings about the synthesis. Only understanding can produce pure reason, once this synthesis has connected phenomena to legislative understanding. All categories work like this as concepts of the understanding involving transcendental deduction [now the same as exposition in the above bit?]. Understanding will not produce specific laws that phenomena obey, but rather provide the general laws of all phenomena insofar as they produce a sensible nature [the whole thing is ridiculously circular and expository, spelling out the implications of arguments which are just asserted in order to make the whole thing work].

Role of the imagination

Once the understanding has produced concepts, it goes on to judge [in the most general sense, legislate about objectivity and ontology, patterns, causes and effects?] The synthesis provided by the imagination is different — it produces schema not syntheses. The schema relies on syntheses, but extends them into 'spatiotemporal relations' as concepts. This will permit legislative judgements, pursuing the issue of how the understanding is applied to phenomena [so schema operationalize the syntheses of understanding?]. Why conceptual relations can emerge like this is a mystery, 'and a hidden art', but there is no intention to see this as essential to or exhaustive of imagination. It only happens once the understanding governs the operation of imagination. The schema arise 'in the speculative interest'(16). It is determined by the speculative interest.

Role of reason

'Understanding judges, but reason reasons'. Reason was originally seen by Kant as operating with classic syllogisms, where reason looks for a middle term to condition the first concept to an object. In other words there are particular acts of understanding involved to produce these conditionings. However, there is a problem since a priori concepts of the understanding are supposed to be applicable to all objects of experience, and now reason seems to be required as an intermediate-term. Reason cannot invoke another category but must produce instead Ideas, again which go beyond experience, and again which are transcendental. What they imply is 'a totality of conditions' [a massive generalization] in which categories may be applied to objects of experience, something, paradoxically unconditioned. This will lead Kant to talk about absolute subjects or souls when discussing substance, complete series with causality and the whole of reality when discussing community [collections of things as well as humans?].

[Interesting this -- never really thought of it before, but that middle term of the syllogism is dodgy: 'All men are mortal' is OK if idealistic, 'Socrates is a man' is the problem since a claim is smuggled in, partly empirical but also based on some assumption that all named Greeks were men, and men in the same sense as the first statement. It seems redundant really but claims all sorts of logical status. It would be OK if it were rendered as 'If Socrates is a man in this sense', but this wold lose all the logical necessity of the conclusion?]

This role for reason is still determined by understanding and the need to apply it. Subjectively, Ideas enable understanding to be both unified and extended. Thus reason receives a particular function in exchange for being submitted to understanding. It extends knowledge by creating 'ideal foci outside experience' (17) which act as 'higher horizons' to permit the maximum extension of understanding beyond the empirical. Objectively, reason serves to constrain the possible radical diversity of phenomena in the interests of universal concepts such as types. In Kantian terms the content of phenomena should 'symbolize the Ideas of reason' (18) [assuming some handy correspondence again]. This will be a harmony which is postulated, however, a presupposition seen as a problem [and argued about in the subjunctive: '"everything happens as if"']. Objects do not display a given totality and unity, but they allow us to posit such a unity 'is the highest degree of our knowledge', as a form of correspondence. It is not that the Idea is a fiction or and idealism, because it possesses an object [a rather idealistic one]. Although it can never fully grasp an object or determine it, analogies are possible with other objects of experience: in this way, we can grant to the concepts of the understanding 'an infinite determination'. In this way, reason is a necessary part of understanding, symbolizing it.

Problem of the relationship between the faculties: common sense

Imagination understanding and reason are related together under the speculative interest, each with its own role, to legislate and judge, synthesise and produce schema, reason and symbolise respectively. Whenever they accord, they define what can be called 'a common sense'. This is a dangerously empiricist term, and Kant uses it to mean some a priori accord of faculties, the results of an accord. Common sense therefore becomes the common basis for any kind of communication. Knowledge requires it to be communicated at all. There is implied 'a good nature of the faculties' (19), something healthy permitting harmony, possessed even by reason, which simply cannot produce deception or illusion.

However, the faculties are different in nature, with different products — feelings of pleasure and pain, intuitions, concepts. These are not just differences of degree as with empiricism. We have already seen [dodgy bits] where Kant just assumes some synthesis between passive sensibility and active understanding, how sensibility is affected by the schema of the imagination — 'but in this way the problem is merely shifted', and the actual relation remains mysterious. There is no preestablished harmony in nature, but one still seems to be implied here as a harmonious accord of the faculties. Technically, there should be a principle of this accord [apparently Kant reread the history of philosophy itself on this basis]. Deleuze is still unhappy and argues that notions of the same are smuggled into these debates, and that recourse to God appears as the basis of it all.

When common sense is governed by speculative reason, the faculties are harmonized by understanding, determined by the concepts of understanding. When we are talking about morality, however common sense takes the form of a moral common sense united by reason. This is explained this different sorts of proportions of the different faculties at working common sense, but Deleuze thinks there is still some a priori argument behind this belief in common sense, and the critiques have only really look to the problem of the relation between the faculties. Indeed, arguing about particular accords presupposes a possible 'free and indeterminate accord'(20), and this really needs to be addressed — and this is done only finally in the Critique of Judgement.

Legitimate employment, illegitimate employment

[More or less a summary of the arguments so far]. Phenomena are the objects of the faculty of knowledge and its speculative interest. They are made subject to this interest through the synthesis of the imagination leading to understanding and its concepts. Understanding dominates and legislates, since reason is not directly applicable to phenomena either and must form Ideas which extend experience. Understanding legislates by speculating about forms, never things in themselves.

However, there is also another theme, relating to 'internal illusions and illegitimate uses of faculties'(21). Sometimes these are produced by the imagination as dreams rather than schema, sometimes the understanding tries to apply concepts to things as they are in themselves. Reason may claim to be directly applicable to objects and wish to legislate. In each case, the limits of the faculties are neglected in favour of 'transcendent employment' of the faculties to some illegitimate domain. Reason in particular is always likely to exceed the bounds of understanding — hence the title of this book. Reason develops its own speculative illusions and false problems, and these become important, actually more so than the traditional notion of error [the intrusion in the mind of an external determination]. Illusions are inevitable, inherent in the nature of reason. We cannot prevent its formation, but we must deal with its effects. This seems to contradict the assumption that faculties are guided by some good nature and natural interest in harmony.

The two main illegitimate uses of reason involve a transcendental use where understanding 'claims to know something in general' (22) independently of sensibility and seemingly attached to the thing in itself, something supersensible, the noumenon. However, in practice, understanding gets to general forms only by pursuing the diversity of objects provided by sensibility. The transcendent illusion by contrast assumes that reason on its own can know something determinate, usually because objects correspond directly to the Idea. This in turn assumes that objects exist somehow in conformity with categories, and this encourages the transcendental illusion above.

Although reason is driven by a good nature, it still faces difficulties in subordinating itself to understanding. However, reason is also constrained by its 'civil state' (23) as well as any natural state it may possess. This civil state must be established and strengthened, to divert reason from speculation [although understanding is still permitted speculative interest]. This is almost suggesting that illusions belong to a state of nature and good health to the civil state. External constraints on reason are therefore insufficient must assume that it has its own interest which is not speculative, but which is overshadowed by understanding. Happily, even illusion can lead us to this conclusion. [Again there is a strange argument here — speculative reason would not be interested in things in themselves if these were not already the legitimate object of another interest]. This additional interest, higher than mere speculation, is to be pursued next.

Chapter 2 The relationship of the faculties in Critique of Practical Reason

Legislative Reason

We have seen above that the faculty of desire has a higher form, not linked to objects and their immediate affects but by representing a pure form. This pure form becomes universal and legislative. The moral law similarly is not just a psychological universal but must be the '"principle of a universal legislation"' (24) and actions are judged against this principle — any moral maxims must be 'thought without contradiction as universal'.

We have also seen that universal legislation is a part of Reason, so that a reasonable and rational representation is independent of all feeling and content, and 'of every sensible condition' [that is not affected by anything empirical?]. This is not itself the product of reasoning — 'the consciousness of the moral law is a fact', not an empirical fact but some '"sole fact of pure reason"' [inevitably circular and definitional I would have thought — why not just say it is some unargued foundation?]. It is this ability to legislate in the faculty of desire that makes it '"pure practical reason"', and because desire has this inner determination, not related to anything external, it can be called '"autonomous will"' [meaning it must therefore resonate with all the stuff about autonomous individuals in capitalism, the denial of any social dimensions and so on].

This is a priori practical synthesis, defended by simply asserting that the will must be free of any external conditions or natural laws, regulated only by pure forms of universal legislation. In this way, practical reason becomes closely tied to freedom [thought so]. More precisely, the concept of practical reason leads to the concept of freedom as a necessary link rather than a something more tightly connected. The concept of freedom belongs to speculative reason, as an Idea, which is still vague, but it takes on the specific notion of objectivity [becomes realistic, applicable] by the notion of the moral law and becomes 'an objective, determined reality'.

Problem of freedom

We need to apply or deduce not just expound the principles of practical reason, provide it with a specific focus. The first limit is that 'only free beings can be subject to practical reason'[a much tighter version of the sentence above]. In particular it concerns the causality of free beings, the way in which they can cause something.

In other phenomena, we find nothing which looks like freedom because they are all subject to laws of natural causality, to be grasped by understanding. Freedom involves the ability to be in a chain of cause and effect spontaneously, avoiding any original course. The concept of freedom therefore does not represent any phenomena but is a thing in itself, unavailable to intuition. [But there are problems with things in themselves as we saw].

Knowledge is forced to posit the existence of things in themselves, things which have to be thought [transcendentally?] as a basis for sensible phenomena, noumena, which are both intelligible and supersensible, but which also mark the limits of knowledge. Some noumena can be thought of as free if the phenomena produced display active and spontaneous faculties, like understanding, reason, intelligence — and this is how human beings are different from other noumena. However, this is important for the practical interests of reason not speculative ones. The example again is where the moral law separates us from other forms of natural sensibility — it has no natural antecedent or cause. This example serves to make a wider point about the intelligible world and how it comes to look like a series of facts [this one example justifies the whole transcendental procedure?]: It shows that practical reason produces objective reality [by assertion].

In this case [and by analogy every case?], practical reason can be seen to legislate over things in themselves, over noumena, over the suprasensible world. The suprasensible becomes '"nature under the autonomy of the pure practical reason. The law this autonomy is the moral law and it, therefore is the fundamental law of suprasensible nature"' (27) [massive stretches in this argument]. The moral law shows us that causality can operate through freedom and thus suprasensible nature can also be seen as possible and as subject to possible laws.

So we have two sorts of legislation. Legislation by natural concepts affects the understanding determining natural concepts in the faculty of knowledge or as a speculative interest, and this applies as a domain to phenomena insofar as they are sensible. Legislation by the concept of freedom however involves reason determining concepts in the faculty of desire, in a practical interest, and it covers noumena. Kant sees a gulf between these two domains.

How does practical reason actually affect beings in themselves, subject them? The problem is that free and rational beings are independent of every sensible condition and must give themselves laws according to reason. [A weird and reasserted implication follows] — noumena show us the identity of legislator and subject of the law, since subjects of the law are also authors of the law. Again the implication is that we are both subjects and legislators, both in suprasensible nature but in a unique capacity as legislative members.

Again the moral law shows us this clearly. It contains a principle for all rational beings which permits a unity and which also indicates our suprasensible nature [that we are not just pushed and pulled by empirical events]. Kant is not arguing that immorality results from subjecting ourselves to sensibility again — lies and crimes also have intelligible causes beyond nature. This is why practical reason and freedom are not tightly connected: freedom always allows us to choose to oppose the moral law, but when we choose to do so we are still intelligible. We cease to be legislators. We opt for a law derived from sensibility.

Role of the understanding

So there are two domains the sensible and the suprasensible and each can be seen as offering a nature, linked only by analogy — both display laws. At the suprasensible level, rationality is limited since there is no guarantee of objective relations between similar beings, only those through the moral law.

The logical test of practical reason is whether any individual maximum can take on the practical form of a universal law. This includes theoretical laws of sensible nature [although they seem to be moral examples again — there can be no law which sanctions the telling of lies for example]. This will extend by analogy to the suprasensible as well, as long as we accept that the intelligible nature of the sensible world indicates an intelligible nature in general.

In sensible nature, understanding is crucial, and intuition or imagination will not do. The issue is conformity to the law in legislative understanding. We can extend this form to other domains where understanding is no longer the legislator, since the general point is whether maxims can turn into practical reasons, whether an action is a case which fits the rule: here reason is the only legislator.

This provides for a new kind of relationship or harmony between the faculties. In the first case considering speculative reason, the understanding legislates, reason symbolises [put rather interestingly as determining the object of its Idea by analogy with the objects of experience]. With practical reasoning, reason is its own legislator while understanding judges or reasons only by comparison and symbolises by developing general qualities of universal law. Subordinate faculties are still important but they are determined by the legislative one.

We see how understanding has a role with practical reason by considering causality. This is implied originally in the faculty of desire where representations are linked to objects which are thereby produced as objects of desire [maybe]. When reason follows its speculative interest the understanding becomes dominant and causality becomes a category of it, but not as 'a productive originating cause' (27), rather in the form of a natural causality linking all sensible phenomena. When reason pursues a practical interest, it takes back this notion. The intention now is to unite causality with freedom, where causality applies to the suprasensible and the free being is its own productive originating cause. This is because categories have a purely logical sense as well as a more practical function in producing knowledge. This also provides additional information about objects and the suprasensible — and implies that causality can also be a free causality. [A lot of work is done by analogy!].

Moral common sense and illegitimate uses

Understanding requires no particular intellectual instruction, but provides 'a moral common sense' [understanding still being referred to the example of morality]. Some of the problems of already been examined, that common sense might be seen as entirely empiricist or intuitive. Instead we should see it as 'an a priori accord of the faculties' under the management of one of them. Thus moral common sense shows an accord between understanding and reason, with reason as legislative: again there is an assumption of a good nature with the faculties acting in harmony guided by an interest of reason.

However, again there are illegitimate uses, producing illusions which makes philosophical reflection necessary. For example instead of just symbolising, producing types of law [the basis of assuming the moral law is a model for understanding in general], understanding tries to produce schema based on intuition. It also attempts to argue that we have a duty to obey the law rather than showing how reason is reconcilable with empirical interests. This is another example of the dialectic between legitimate and illegitimate uses.

Any critique of practical reason would not follow the form of the critique of pure reason, with the production of the illusions that we discussed above. Instead, practical reason is mixed with a certain impurity, based on empirical interests. In both cases, the transcendental method involves determining what might be seen as an 'immanent employment of reason' according to one of its interests. This leads to identifying illegitimate transcendent employment of speculative reason as we saw, and there is a similar illusion with practical reason if it 'lets itself be empirically conditioned' (31).

Is this parallel adequate? The dialectical contradictory nature of practical reason is slightly different because it turns on a tendency to link happiness and virtue. This will eventually produce an antinomy, since happiness cannot be the cause of virtue,only the moral law. Virtue cannot cause happiness either since the laws of the sensible world are not oriented towards virtuous intentions. Does this antinomy arise solely from the projection of empirical interests, though? The argument seems to be that the antinomy is found in practical reason itself, as some sort of internal illusion.

This arises because pure practical reason excludes pleasure or satisfaction, but we can still get satisfaction in a negative way by expressing our independence from sensibilities, 'a purely intellectual contentment' (32) when understanding accords with reason. The problem is that this negative enjoyment is not the same as positive sensible feelings although we often confuse the two — this is the internal illusion, seemingly systematically generated by practical reason. Finally, we usually mistake the contentment delivered by practical reason, a feature of its immanence, with happiness, even to the extent that we can see happiness as the cause of practical reason, the motive of virtue and so on [so anti-utilitarianism. Note the crucial role played here by the intellectual pleasures].

So there is a kind of dialectic when empirical interests contradict reason and make it impure, but this depends in turn on a deeper contradiction in practical reason itself, another sense of dialectic. Only philosophical reflection will save us from the internal illusions, and this will in effect pursue a new totalization to overcome the antinomy [maybe], as a form of '"fortunate perplexity"'.

Problem of realization

Moral common sense has not depended so far on sensibility or imagination because the moral law rises above all schema and conditions produced by sensibility. Free beings do not depend on intuition, and suprasensible nature has a role as well as sensible nature, and these are not easily connected. However sensibility also produces feelings not just intuitions, pains and pleasures. The negative effects of the law produce a certain amount of pain giving respect for the law, but also domesticating sensibility. Nevertheless respect for the law is the most effective motive, more effective than the pleasures of intellectual contentment discussed above, which is not really a feeling [in the vulgar sense].

Nevertheless respect only provides the basis for proper fulfilment of the law. Kant is often misunderstood here — he is interested in the realization of practical reason and the law, despite difficulties like the gap between the sensible and the suprasensible. [ I've realized that we don't just discard the noumenal as hopelessly unknowable --it offers unrealized possibilities] . This gap is not to be ignored but filled, even if we cannot use speculative reason to do so. The suprasensible qualities [of human beings?] are supposed to influence the sensible: reason and freedom are supposed to be actualized in the sensible world. The suprasensible is the archetypal world and the sensible the 'ectypal', showing the possible effects of the idea of the former [compare with virtual and actual?]. After all beings are both phenomena and things in themselves, subject to natural necessity but also the source of free causality.  Any one action can relate both to a chain of sensible causes or to a free cause 'whose sign or expression it is' (33). Free causality can only have sensible effects, never effects within itself [but can it have suprasensible effects as well?]. If practical reason is the law of free causality it must refer to phenomena. At the same time suprasensible nature 'must be realized in the sensible world' [what lies behind this 'must'?].

In this sense, nature and freedom can oppose each other but also assist each other depending on whether or not they conform to the moral law. This is not an opposition between nature and freedom but between nature as phenomena and the effects of freedom on phenomena. There may be separate domains of nature and freedom 'but there is only a single terrain... that of experience' (34).

This is a bit paradoxical [!] for Kant. Representations of objects [sensible objects represented in knowledge?] can never determine free will or moral law, but the reverse does operate — the moral law determines objects in conformity with free will. If reason legislates in the faculty of desire, this faculty can itself legislate over objects as objects of practical reason. These form 'the moral Good' and we can experience this as intellectual contentment. Strictly speaking the moral good is the suprasensible equivalent of a sensible object; it represents it, stands for something which is to be realized, an effect. In this sense practical interest relates to objects not just to know with them but to realize them [release what is immanent].

The moral law is independent of intuition and of the things affecting sensibility just as suprasensible nature is independent of sensible nature. We do not use our physical powers to realize things which are good, rather it is that we perceive moral possibilities of willing actions which realize them [at least potentially?]. The moral law must therefore be connected to sensible consequences, just as freedom must be. The moral law does not just subject phenomena directly. Freedom can never just contradict natural mechanisms which are always also found in the phenomenon. There are no physical miracles available. It is rather that the legislation of reason makes the suprasensible capable of realisation in the sensible, makes free causality have sensible effects which express the moral law.

Conditions of realisation

In what conditions is realisation possible? It must be possible to prop up the moral law. We have to presuppose an accord between sensible and suprasensible natures, following natural and moral laws respectively. We can apparently detect this in 'the idea of a Good Sovereign', some totality which is the object of pure practical reason (35). However how is such a Good Sovereign possible? We know that the desire for happiness cannot be a motive of virtue, nor can any maxims of virtue be the cause of happiness, since virtue and happiness belong to different worlds. However, a solution is apparently hinted at here — there may not be an immediate connection of happiness and virtue, but it might be achievable after 'an infinite progress (the immortal soul)'. There is also a possible intermediary which both make sensible nature intelligible and provides a moral cause for the world — God. Both the soul and God are seen as Ideas in the technical sense [that is a set of concepts produced by reason].

Freedom receives an objective reality from the moral law, and in the same way the psychological Idea of the soul and the theological Idea of God also achieve the same objective reality under the moral law. A practical orientation like this grounds the three great Ideas of speculative reason, whereas speculation itself is insufficient. These are then taken to be '"postulates of practical reason"'.

However, practical determination affects the three Ideas in different ways. The Idea of freedom is directly determined by the moral law, and so appears more as a matter of fact than just a postulate. The other two Ideas are conditions of the necessary object of a free will — in other words '"their possibility is proved by the fact that freedom is real"' (36) [again not so much a proof as a way of making different conceptions possible].

There must be in addition 'conditions immanent to sensible nature itself' which provide for the possibilities to express or symbolize the suprasensible. There are three aspects — 'natural finality in the content of phenomena'; the finality of nature in beautiful objects; the sublime in formless aspects of nature which nevertheless 'testifies to the existence of a higher finality' [Science Fiction really]. With the beautiful and the sublime, imagination becomes fundamental, either being freely exercised, or even being capable of exceeding its own boundaries feeling itself to be unlimited, in both cases relating to these Ideas of reason. [I had not seen before how all these arguments fit together and justify each other]. Thus [!] active imagination as well as beliefs are included within the moral common sense and they have the effect of making sensible nature capable of receiving the effect of the suprasensible. More specifically, imagination also belongs to moral common sense.

Practical interest and speculative interest

Every faculty has an interest, '"a principle which contains the condition under which alone its exercise is advanced"' (36) [so nothing like a vulgar interest, then, as in, say Habermas] the interests of reason are different from empirical interests because they are subject to the higher form of a faculty and thus address different aspects of objects. The speculative interest operates on phenomena so as to make them form a sensible nature. The practical interest operates on rational beings as things in themselves in order to form a suprasensible nature which then has to be realised. These two interests should be confined to their proper domains.

Freedom begins as a speculative Idea, undetermined in itself, and speculative reason cannot make much progress with it, until it is given a practical determination from moral law, although it confirms its existence to speculative reason. The nature of a free being cannot be given by intuition, and we only know through moral law that such a being must exist, and that it has a 'free causality'[that is not subject to any external causes, including, presumably sociological ones]. The practical interest here is not sufficient to form actual knowledge, but it does suggest that there is something which can be realized. The same goes with the Ideas of the soul and God — they are not added to knowledge directly.

Overall, the speculative interest is subordinate to the practical one. The speculative interest only operates because the suprasensible must be potentially realized. This practical interest is what drives speculative reason. We see this with the discussion of faith, which is technically speculative but which becomes 'assertoric' [simply stating that something is the case] once it has been determined by the moral law. Thus faith involves not a simple faculty but a synthesis of the speculative and practical interests, one which follows the subordination of the speculative. This provides a superior proof of the existence of God for Kant, one which is technically superior to those based on speculation alone — as an object of knowledge, we can know about God indirectly via analogy, but the moral law gives him a practical determination and reality [he must have a place in the whole scheme linking the suprasensible and the sensible?].

All interests must imply a concept of an end. Reason ends with a grasp of sensible nature and other material ends, but they may be final ends as well — we could not decide on the worth of the world just by the fact that it is known: there must be some final end for the world which we presuppose and this gives contemplation of the world its worth as well.

We have two notions of final end. First beings should be considered as ends in themselves, and second sensible nature should have some last end which it is attempting to realise. This means that the final end must be long to practical reason or to the faculty of desire in its higher form. For example only the moral law determines the rational being as an end in itself, a final end the employment of freedom and also the last end of sensible nature. Here, we are somehow driven to realise the suprasensible, specifically to unite universal happiness with morality [massive undefended presupposition is here, of course, based on the idea that we just must conceive of creation is ending with harmony, bringing together moral faculties and our own ends as human beings: Kant wants to argue that we are committed to this conception if we want to think of a final end of creation].

So the speculative interest that leads to suggested ends to sensible nature depends on the practical interest implying a rational being as an end in itself, and also as the last end of sensible nature. This finally confirms that every interest is practical, and even speculative reason is both conditioned by the practical and only completed by the practical. [Lots of really dense argumentation here. I still can't help but think it was all predetermined, that it all had to end with this, that it wasn't worked up from first principles].

Chapter 3 The relationship of the faculties in the Critique of Judgement

Is there a higher form of feeling?

[Apparently, Kant initially thought not]. Are there representations which can determine things like pleasure or pain a priori. Sensations can be known only empirically. However, some might serve as the representation of objects which involves some a priori element.

Perhaps the moral law can be seen as an indication of the pure form [I think this has been argued quite a lot already, but here it is critiqued]. Pleasure would be seen to yield a higher form of intellectual contentment with the law, and respect for the law could be seen as some higher state of pain. However, here Kant raises a problem, since contentment is not actually a sensible effect but just 'an intellectual "analogue" of feeling' (39). If respect is confined to a negative feeling, this might work, but respect has a positive aspect as well, acting as a kind of motive for the law. So generally, the faculty of feeling cannot attain a higher form by seeking the origins for it in the lower or higher faculty of desire.

Where does this leave the notion of a higher pleasure? [We must have one of these because is very useful in social distantiation]. It can't be just some sensible attraction nor a particular intellectual inclination such as one involved in the practical interest in an object. It can only be higher by being disinterested [and only secure bourgeois are capable of that]. So what happens is the actual represented object is not as important as the effect of a representation on me: it then becomes 'the sensible expression of pure judgement, of a pure operation of judging' [it happily confirms my collective prejudices] .

We can see this at work if we consider aesthetic judgements about beauty. What sort of representation would lead to pleasure in this judgement of beauty? It cannot be just the object itself materially, but only insofar as it represents a pure form, of an object in this case. We cannot grasp this form through intuition which still relates too much to actual external objects. We have to think instead of how a singular object reflects its form in the imagination. Thus, for Kant, colours and sounds are too material, too dominated by their material form for us, to stimulate our imagination — we cannot grasp them as a series of vibrations for example. They are too 'entrenched in our senses' (40). The sort of beauty we are talking about relates instead to design or composition, manifested by these materials.

These reflected representations lead to the higher pleasure of the beautiful. This makes the faculty of feeling different from the others, because it is not related to any interest of reason, but is independent of both speculation and practical reason, because it's disinterested. It follows that it does not legislate either. It is indifferent to specific or singular objects and therefore cannot legislate over them. It cannot be autonomous in the classic sense but only heautonomous, 'it legislates over itself'. The faculty of feeling is no domain and says nothing about the conditions in which we can subject objects. It concerns itself only with subjective conditions for the exercise of the faculties.

Aesthetic common sense

The beautiful is not just something which is pleasant, because it also includes 'a certain objectivity, a certain necessity, a certain universality' (41). However representations of beautiful objects are not universal but particular, so no theoretical generalizations are possible [in terms reminiscent of Deleuze's remark about science, 'the objectivity of the aesthetic judgement is therefore without concept'. In other words necessity and universality are subjective. If we introduce determinate concepts like geometric spaces or rational ideas, aesthetic judgement ceases to be pure and 'beauty ceases to be free' [ludicrous circularity again, driven by the hidden agenda of defining higher pleasures]. The interests of reason are not universal and necessary, and only pleasure is. It follows [!] that pleasure must 'by rights be communicable to or valid for everyone', that everyone can experience it. This assumption is even more [foundational] than any postulates, since they include determinate concepts.

However we still need a role for the understanding [communicability would not be possible without some shared understanding?]. The imagination reflects objects by focusing on their form and therefore has no determinate concepts, but it still relates to understanding, 'an indeterminate concept of the understanding [itself]'. There is some agreement between the imagination and the understanding as long as it does not legislate specifically. In other words [!], the imagination can develop schema, even without concepts. But schematization stll involves some limit to the imagination on behalf of understanding. The imagination can do something else as well, however it can 'reflect the form of the object', freely contemplating the figure, producing possibly arbitrary forms of intuitions. This is a different kind of accord of faculties, which is indeterminate and free.

This is also going to define 'a properly aesthetic common sense (taste)'. This free accord is what produces communicable pleasure [more and more abstract and stupid. The habitus is what produces any accord about pleasure]. We cannot know about this intellectually, since there are no determinate concepts, but can only feel it. However this subjective accord of faculties 'itself forms a common sense' and justifies our supposition that feelings are communicable without concept [round and round we go].

It is not that aesthetic common sense somehow completes the other kinds of common sense, because it does not legislate over objects and is not therefore itself a faculty in the sense of being legislative [the second sense as above]. There is no objective accord of the faculties here in the form of a hierarchy where a dominant faculty determines the roles of the others. Instead we have 'a pure subjective harmony where imagination and understanding are exercised spontaneously, each on his own account' (42). So, in the barmy world of Kant, we are talking not of aesthetic common sense completing the other two but rather providing them 'with a basis or [making] them possible' [no doubt in some sense of providing the right {logical?} preconditions for them]. Unless it were possible for the faculties to develop some subjective harmony, the more objective ones would not be possible.

More problems ensue. Is this free accord of the faculties a priori [if so, it would presumably belong to speculative reason?] or do we know about it because it is somehow produced in us, that it has a 'properly transcendental' genesis? [No doubt we just have to get to that answer — but can we do transcendental analysis without employing reason? -- I think the weasel will be that it is an interest of reason somehow grounded in Nature itself?].

The relationship between the faculties in the sublime

When it comes to judging what is beautiful, understanding and imagination seem crucial rather than reason as such. It also involves a higher form of pleasure but not pain. There is another judgement, this time involving the sublime [which I've never entirely understood I must say, something that completely defies reason and understanding?].

With the sublime, imagination is not connected to formal reflection, since the sublime is experienced when we encounter the formless or the deformed '(immensity or power)'. This pushes the imagination to its limit, offers it violence. Imagination can cope as long as it confined itself to apprehending, '(the successive apprehension of parts)' (43), but this threatens its simultaneous comprehension of the process overall. There is a particular challenge from 'immensity', and our imagination is impotent. Although it's tempting to attribute immensity to sensible nature, it is reason that unites the sensible into an immense whole [will be the same with all the supposed characteristics of nature, including the weird ones below?]. The whole here is the Idea of the sensible, with its substrata the intelligible and the suprasensible. Imagination thus realizes its own limits, 'that all its power is nothing in comparison to an Idea'.

The sublime has produced a direct subjective relationship between imagination and reason, but in the form of a dissension not an accord, a contradiction between the demands of reason and the power of imagination. This is experienced as a loss of freedom for the imagination, a subsequent pain. However, [inevitably], there is a deeper kind of accord — there must be something inaccessible but present in sensible nature, the  '"presentation of the infinite"'. As a result, even the imagination has its destination in the suprasensible.

The soul must be the only form of unity of all the faculties in the indeterminate and the suprasensible, bringing us back into the picture. This marvellous indefinite accord has now been shown to have a genesis, and is more than just an assumption [it follows from the definition of the soul?]. We [?] can feel the sublime in our aesthetic common sense, and again this must involve a culture 'as the movement of its genesis'.

[For some reason -- see below], this mysterious genesis is seen as 'fundamental to our destiny' (44). However, we have seen two notions of the sublime, the immense and the dynamic one involving power [the first one is here also seen as 'mathematical']. The first notion relates to the faculty of knowledge, and the 2nd to the faculty of desire. However, [via the abstract notion of power as something that human beings can do rather than that which is done to them] we can see that we are predestined to this kind of concept as a moral being: 'The sense of the sublime is engendered within us in such a way that it prepares a higher finality and prepares us ourselves for the advent of the moral law' [as soon as we can see that something lies outside nature and outside empirical life, we can come to see that morality must as well?].

The standpoint of genesis

Is there an analogous genesis of the sense of the beautiful? The notion of the sublime is subjective, a relationship between the faculties, projected onto nature, onto what is formless in nature. The beautiful also involves a subjective accord, but this develops from objective forms. This raises a new problem of deduction of a principle that must also be objective [so --morality for the sublime and ontology for the beautiful?].

Aesthetic pleasure is entirely disinterested, but objects of beauty can be united with a rational interest, so perhaps this interest can offer us a principle for the genesis of communicability or universality [this is the real issue of the discussion of genesis, to stave off accusations that the whole thing is just the subjective wanderings of Kant?]. It is this principle of reason that would help us develop the notion of the common sense which underpins the beautiful.

Perhaps this will be an empirical social interest, which clearly can produce a sort of taste or communicability. However, this will be an a posteriori link with beauty [we judge it by its effects]. Can there be any a priori aspects of reason at work? We have to turn to the idea of an aptitude which nature possesses to produce beautiful forms, whether humans are there to reflect them in their imagination or not [beauty in the deep sea]. This enables us to see that the interest united with the beautiful does not relate to the form but on the content used by nature. Thus the colours discussed above may not be beautiful in their own rights, but they are the object of '"an interest of the beautiful"' (45) [real weasel in here].

We now suggest that there is a primary matter producing the beautiful in nature, 'a fluid substance (the oldest state of matter)', which evaporates and solidifies or crystallizes. It is this process of the formation of the beautiful in nature which can be the basis of a principle for genesis. [Real deus ex machina stuff --fluid matter comes along just at the right time to provide the ontological principle].

We have to rethink the interests of reason. They are no longer connected to objects subject to a higher faculty, because there are no objects subject to feeling, only a subjective notion of harmony of our own faculties, with no implications for objects. So when we look at the process whereby nature produces the beautiful, we cannot understand this as the result of the legislation of one of our faculties. Instead, it reflects 'a contingent accord' with all our faculties together. The actual process of fluid matter crystallizing is purely mechanical [so objective] 'a power without aim', but one which is luckily adapted to the process of harmony of our faculties. The pleasure of harmony is disinterested [in objects], but we do have a rational interest nevertheless in the way in which nature's productions accord with our own pleasure. This is a whole new third interest of reason, not involved in subjecting objects, but turning on 'a contingent accord of nature with our faculties'.

Symbolism in nature

The free materials of nature do not relate simply to our concepts of the understanding, but rather overwhelm the understanding, prompting thought [for bourgeois philosophers] even more so than concepts do. When we experience a colour, we relate it to a concept of the understanding, but also to a different concept, resembling the concept of the understanding but actually only through the development of an analogy with this other object [really tortuous stuff here]. This other concept is an Idea of reason [where the Idea Is a kind of generalized concept]. This seems to permit metaphors [actually symbols, which smuggles in communicability and cultural consensus] --[the example is the lily related to concepts of colour and flower but also to the Idea of innocence, as an analogue of the white]. This process is called symbolism in Kant, and it is ruled by the interests of the beautiful.

So the understanding can see its concepts enlarged to infinity. The imagination is also freed from the constraint of the understanding which affected it in the production of schema, and can now reflect form freely. It is the interest of the beautiful that develops the imagination and its relation with understanding in this way. Symbolization connects the free materials of sensible nature with the Idea of reason, expanding the understanding and freeing the imagination [within cultural constraints though], suggesting 'a suprasensible unity of all our faculties' which permits an accord and also subjective harmony. [I think I can see the force of his criticism in Difference and Repetition, I think, where he says that the whole understanding of ontology is really based on a kind of human subjective operation of combining different faculties, although ontology is supposed to determine this subjective operation].

This unity of the faculties based on free accord lies in 'the deepest part of the soul' (46). Again we can argue that therefore [?] this shows that this free accord permits all the other relations and determinations, that it somehow already involves reason and its determining role in the practical interest. As some foundation, it also represents the predestination of a moral being: it is either a goal of practical reason appearing as the principle of the ends of freedom, or it is a disposition to be moral 'in the interest of the beautiful' (47). In short, for Kant, 'the beautiful itself is symbol of the good', in the strong sense that the interest of the beautiful 'disposes us to be good, destines us for morality'. In this way, what is the deepest in the soul also provides for what is most elevated in human beings — 'the supremacy of the faculty of desire' [which I take to mean the human ability to follow purposive, willed but moral action in the world].