Kantian Metaphysics

Course summary

Kantian Metaphysics


Kant’s transcendental idealism consisted in his claim that both our experience of the empirical world and the empirical world itself have a structure that we ourselves impose (where this structure includes space, time, and causation).  But he also denied that this structure is a feature of things as they are in themselves, quite independent of our experience of them. By combining these two theses Kant rejected both the ‘tabula rasa’ (blank slate) favoured by the empiricists, and the a priori knowledge of the world favoured by the rationalists. Kant also held that there are two aspects to reason, and this has important consequences for freedom. Practical reason (particularly morality) presupposes freewill, but theoretical reason cannot demonstrate that we are free. During this weekend we will discuss the thought of this hugely important philosopher. There will be plenty of time to talk to the speakers and to socialize with other participants.

Programme details



2.45pm         Course Registration


3.00pm         Kantian Metaphysics: An Overview

                    ADRIAN MOORE


4.30pm         Tea / coffee


5.00pm         The Scope of Kantian Metaphysics: Hume’s Problem and its Solution

                    ANIL GOMES


6.30pm         Break / bar open


7.00pm         Dinner


8.15pm-        The limits of Kantian Metaphysics: Speculation about freedom, immortality and God






8.15am         Breakfast (residents only)


9.30am         Kantian Metaphysics: Its legacy and prospects

                    ANIL GOMES


10.45am       Coffee / tea


11.15am       Q & A

Questions directed by MARIANNE TALBOT


12.30pm       Break / bar open


1.00pm         Lunch


2.00pm         Course disperses



Recommended reading



Basic Reading List

Immanuel Kant, Critique of Pure Reason, Preface to the First Edition, Preface to the Second Edition, and Introduction

Roger Scruton, Kant, Chapters 1 to 4

Adrian Moore, ‘Immanuel Kant’s Metaphysics’, in David Edmonds and Nigel Warburton (eds), Philosophy Bites Back


More Advanced Reading List

Sebastian Gardner, Kant and the Critique of Pure Reason, especially Chapters 1 to 4, more if possible

Anil Gomes, ‘Is Kant’s Transcendental Deduction of the Categories Fit for Purpose?’, in Kantian Review (2010)

Robert Adams, ‘Things in Themselves’, in Philosophy and Phenomenological Research (1997)



The Stanford Encyclopaedia: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/kant-metaphysics/



Accommodation for this weekend is at Rewley House for Saturday night only.

Depending on availability it may also be possible to extend your stay, please enquire at the time of booking for availability and prices.

All bedrooms are modern, comfortably furnished and each room has tea and coffee making facilities, Freeview television, and Free WiFi and private bath or shower rooms.


Unfortunately it is not yet possible to book twin room accommodation online, so if you wish to book a twin room, please send in your completed enrolment form or contact the Day & Weekend Events Office, Email: ppdayweek@conted.ox.ac.uk



Tuition (includes tea/coffee): £77.00
Baguette Sunday: £4.70
Saturday Dinner: £19.00
Single B&B Saturday night: £75.85
Single Room only (no breakfast): £64.85
Sunday Lunch: £13.50
Twin B&B Saturday night (per person): £54.35


If you are in receipt of a state benefit you may be eligible for a reduction of 50% of tuition fees.

If you do not qualify for the concessionary fee but are experiencing financial hardship, you may still be eligible for financial assistance.

Concessionary fees for short courses


Dr Anil Gomes


is Fellow and Tutor in Philosophy at Trinity College, Oxford, and CUF Lecturer (Associate Professor) at the University of Oxford. His main research interests are in the philosophy of mind and Immanuel Kant's Critique of Pure Reason and, in particular, on issues which arise at their intersection. He is the editor of Kant and the Philosophy of Mind (OUP, 2017).

Professor Adrian Moore


is Fellow and Tutor in Philosophy at St Hugh’s College, Oxford, and Professor of Philosophy at the University of Oxford.  He has published four books: The Infinite (Routledge, 1990); Points of View (OUP, 1997); Noble in Reason, Infinite in Faculty: Themes and Variations in Kant’s Moral and Religious Philosophy (Routledge, 2003); and The Evolution of Modern Metaphysics: Making Sense of Things (CUP, 2012).  He is co-editor, with Lucy O’Brien, of the philosophical journal MIND.

Ms Marianne Talbot

Director of Studies


Marianne Talbot took her first degree at London University, then her B.Phil at Oxford (Corpus Christi College). She has taught for the colleges of Oxford University for 30 years (1987 – 1990 at Pembroke College, 1991 – 2000 at Brasenose College). She has been Director of Studies in Philosophy at OUDCE since 2001. She is the author of Bioethics: An Introduction, and Critical Reasoning: A Romp Through the Foothills of Logic. Marianne’s podcasts have been hugely popular. Two of them have been global number one on iTunesU. One of these (The Nature of Arguments) has been downloaded 7 million times.