Kant’s and Hume’s epistemology

Essay by walbertA-, November 2014

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Kant's and Hume's epistemology

Immanuel Kant and David Hume were notable philosophers within the modern era, each with their own respective ideology and philosophy; Kant was influenced by rationalism, crafted a theory after the Copernican Revolution explaining the role of human reason in obtaining knowledge, whereas Hume, who was influenced by skepticism, put an end to pure reason and an end to the Enlightenment Era.

In the following term paper I will first give a definition of epistemology, followed by explaining in detail Kant's distinction between analytical and synthetical judgments as well as compare the similarities and differences between Kant's distinction between Relations of Ideas and Matters of Fact. Additionally, I will present what Kant and Hume each says about mathematical and metaphysical knowledge, and finally give my own view of what they have said about metaphysical knowledge.

The million dollar question for epistemology is to answer the question: What is knowledge? To even try to find knowledge we have to turn to Epistemology.

Epistemology means to reason about knowledge. Epistemologist study what makes up knowledge, what kinds of things can we know, what are the limits to what we can know, and even if it's possible to actually know anything at all. This definition involves three conditions and what philosophers say a person needs to meet to be true. Take this statement of fact for example: The colors of the American flag is red, white, blue. According to this standard definition, this fact is known by the person if: (a) The person believes the statement is true, (b) The statement is in fact true, (c) The person is justified in believing the statement is true. Which all three of these conditions must be met.

Belief's are something that is contained in my head. They are not an average...