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The Radical Enlightenment of Solomon MaimonJudaism, Heresy, and Philosophy$
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Abraham P. Socher

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780804751360

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804751360.001.0001

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German Idealism in a Maimonidean Key

German Idealism in a Maimonidean Key

Chapter:
(p.85) Three German Idealism in a Maimonidean Key
Source:
The Radical Enlightenment of Solomon Maimon
Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804751360.003.0004

In his commentary on Immanuel Kant's Critique of Pure Reason, Solomon Maimon used an approach that he described as one of independent and eclectic exegesis. Maimon's commentary moves from “obscure ideas” to distinct understanding, which is also characteristic of his proposed revision of transcendental idealism based on the concepts that he tackled in his Hebrew manuscript, Hesheq Shelomo. This chapter examines how Maimon employed the tools and terms of his medieval philosophical perfectionism to revise Kantian idealism. It discusses issues of doctrine, genre, and influence to interpret Maimon's mature post-Kantian philosophy. Maimon agrees that Kant's account of human cognition is a vivid description of the condition in which man appears to find himself, but insists that the condition is not one of knowledge. His notion of the finite human intellect, which strives toward the infinite intellect as a kind of endless task, is compatible with the neo-Kantian version of idealism.

Keywords:   Solomon Maimon, transcendental idealism, Kantian idealism, Critique of Pure Reason, knowledge, human cognition, philosophical perfectionism, Immanuel Kant, human intellect, doctrine

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