Kant, Metaphysics and the Problem of Affection


  • Angwe Ken Agede, PhD Benue State University, Makurdi
  • Orfega Francis Orfega Federal Polytechnic Nasarawa, Nigeria


Copernican turn, subjectivity, transcendental idealism, a priori knowledge, affection


In his so-called Copernican revolution in philosophy, Immanuel Kant displaces activity from the object and locates the same in the subject in his attempt to account for knowledge. To be sure, Kant’s “changed point of view” reverses the Western traditional metaphysical understanding of cognition, which constitutes knowledge in terms of the givenness of the object to the subject. Several schools of interpretation have arisen in an attempt to gain an understanding of this aspect of Kant’s thought. This paper will dialogue with the analytic school of philosophy, which reads the Copernican revolution, and, indeed, the German idealism movement Kant has inaugurated as denying the existence of the external world and, by extension, metaphysics. It is the view of this inquiry that this reading misrepresents Kant’s view on metaphysics. In opposition to analytic philosophy, therefore, it will argue that Kant has an ambivalent attitude toward metaphysics. In particular, it will contend that Kant’s paradigm shift constitutes what might roughly be termed a rejection of “bad metaphysics,” while accepting what he considers “good metaphysics.” Kant rejects bad metaphysics for extending thought beyond sensibility and, consequently, allowing thought access to objects not given in experience. By contrast, good metaphysics restricts thought in what it can reasonably know; granting reason insight only into the condition of possible experience. Hence, Kant’s rejection of a metaphysics type should not be confused with a wholesale rejection of metaphysics as such. Formulated in this way, therefore, Kant’s anti-metaphysical credentials should be re-examined or at least qualifie

Author Biographies

Angwe Ken Agede, PhD, Benue State University, Makurdi

Department of Philosophy
Benue State University, Nigeria

Orfega Francis Orfega, Federal Polytechnic Nasarawa, Nigeria

Department of Humanities and Social Sciences
Federal Polytechnic Nasarawa, Nigeria


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How to Cite

Agede, A. K., & Orfega, O. F. (2022). Kant, Metaphysics and the Problem of Affection. Madonna University Thought and Action Journal of Philosophy, 1(2), 50–58. Retrieved from http://tajopmado.com/index.php/mu-tajop/article/view/34