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Kantianism - First Response

friedrich reinhold johann wilhelm

Kant's work immediately produced both acclaim and hostility. It was first popularized by the 1786 Letters on the Kantian Philosophy by Karl Leonhard Reinhold (1757–1823), but by 1789 Reinhold had turned against Kant's dualisms—his distinctions between sensibility and understanding, between appearances and things in themselves, and between theoretical cognition and practical reason—and initiated the attempts to derive all of philosophy from a single principle that would be taken up in the "absolute idealism" of Johann Gottlieb Fichte (1762–1814), Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling (1775–1854), and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770–1831). Other thinkers remained closer to Kant, especially the poet and historian Friedrich Schiller (1759–1805), who, in "On Grace and Dignity" (1793) and the Letters on the Aesthetic Education of Mankind (1795), argued for a greater confluence between our inclinations and our moral principles than Kant thought possible without being tempted by the monism of the absolute idealists. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749–1832) was also deeply affected by Kant's third critique in the development of his own conception of nature.

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