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pleasurable state.
Thus without having to be derived from the first moment, the second
moment of the Analytic of the Beautiful is consistent with its initial
inspiration. The agreement of imagination and understanding,
unbound by a determinate concept, is a ˜˜free play™™ where each enhances
the activity of the other. The consciousness of that agreement is a source
of pleasure, and the consciousness of the universal communicability of
the free play and of the pleasure derived from it, is itself a source of
pleasure. The pleasure we take in the universal communicability of a
state of harmony, namely the combination of a second-order pleasure
(the pleasure of communicability) and a first-order pleasure (the pleas-
ure in the free play of imagination and understanding in apprehending
a particular object) is what is expressed in the predicate of an aesthetic
judgment of reflection, ˜˜this is beautiful.™™
Let me recapitulate. I have argued that the peculiarity of the judg-
ments of taste, as analyzed by Kant according to his ˜˜leading thread,™™ is
that an explicit judgment about the object supports an implicit judgment


13
See Paul Guyer, KCT, pp. 139“40. Henry Allison, KTT, pp. 110“18.
14
See Hannah Ginsborg, ˜˜On the key to the critique of taste,™™ Pacific Philosophical Quarterly,
vol. 72 (1991), pp. 290“313. Also ˜˜Lawfulness without a law: Kant on the free play of
imagination and understanding,™™ Philosophical Topics, vol. 25, no. 1 (1997), pp. 37“81. In
the latter essay, Ginsborg seems to give more content to the aesthetic judgment than that of
being a self-referential judgment that asserts nothing beyond its own universal validity.
For what now seems to be universally valid (or, in her own words, what seems to be
exemplary of a rule that has universal validity) is the activity of imagination in apprehend-
ing a particular object. Nevertheless, it remains that the aesthetic judgment, which is no
other than the aesthetic pleasure itself, is the judgment that asserts this exemplary validity
of my act of apprehension, or asserts that my act of apprehension is ˜˜as it ought to be.™™ I
agree with her insistence on the consciousness of universal validity as a component in the
feeling of pleasure, but I disagree with her attempt to reduce the content of the judgment
to this self-referential assertion of universal validity. See also her discussion of Allison™s
view on this point in ˜˜Aesthetic Judging and the Intentionality of Pleasure,™™ Inquiry,
vol. 46, no. 2 (2003), pp. 164“81. And my own discussion of Allison™s view in ˜˜On KTT,™™
pp. 152“5.
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280

about the judging subjects. We have seen what this thesis means in the
case of the first two moments. According to the first moment, the pre-
dicate of the judgment of taste does not express a property that the
judgment asserts of the object; nor does it express a disposition of the
object to cause a state of pleasure in the subject. Rather, it expresses a
disposition of the judging subjects to elicit in themselves a state of
pleasure upon apprehending the object. According to the second
moment, the pleasure thus elicited actually has two components: the
first-order pleasure elicited by the ˜˜free play™™ or mutually enhancing
agreement of imagination and understanding; and the pleasure taken in
the universal communicability of the pleasure thus elicited. Kant™s strik-
ing thesis is that the consciousness of the universal communicability of
the state of mind in apprehending the object is itself the source of the
pleasure specific to a judgment of the beautiful. This is what is expressed
by the clause I suggested to find implicitly contained in the predicate of
the judgment of taste: ˜˜All judging subjects, upon apprehending this
object, ought to feel the same pleasure and to agree with my judgment.™™
This turning around, in Kant™s Analytic of the Beautiful, from the
manifest judgment about the object to the implicit judgment imbedded
in its predicate, finds its culminating point with the third title, ˜˜relation,™™
which I will now consider.


Relation in aesthetic judgment: the ˜˜purposiveness without
a purpose™™ of the apprehended object as the ground of the
˜˜purposiveness without a purpose™™ of the judging
subject™s state of mind; and vice versa
In order to understand the question Kant poses himself under the
heading of ˜˜relation™™ in judgment, we must recall the significance of
this heading in the table of logical functions in the first Critique.
What Kant calls ˜˜relation™™ in a judgment ˜˜S is P™™ is the relation of the
assertion of the predicate P (or more precisely, the assertion that an
object x belongs to the extension of the predicate P) to its ground or
reason (Grund). The ground or reason of a judgment is what, in the
subject S (in a categorical judgment) or in the condition added to the
subject S (in a hypothetical judgment), justifies attributing the predicate
of that judgment to all (or some, or one) object(s) X thought under S. For
example, the ground of the attribution of the predicate ˜˜mortal™™ to all
objects X falling under the concept ˜˜man™™ in the judgment ˜˜all men are
mortal™™ is that the subject-concept ˜˜man™™ can be analyzed into ˜˜animal™™
ANALYTIC OF THE BEAUTIFUL 281

and ˜˜rational.™™ And ˜˜animal,™™ as containing ˜˜living,™™ also contains ˜˜mor-
tal.™™ Similarly, in the judgment ˜˜Caius is mortal,™™ the ground of the
attribution of the predicate ˜˜mortal™™ to the individual named ˜˜Caius™™ is
the concept ˜˜man™™ under which the singular object named ˜˜Caius™™ is
thought.15
When Kant examines judgments of the beautiful under the title of
relation, then, the question he asks himself is: what grounds the asser-
tion of the predicate ˜˜beautiful™™ in such judgments? Is it the subject S of
the judgment (for example, ˜˜this rose™™ in ˜˜this rose is beautiful™™), and if
so, what is it about this subject S that grounds the assertion of the
predicate P (˜˜beautiful™™)? Is it a character contained in the subject-
concept (in which case the aesthetic judgment would be analytic) or is
it something about the experience or perhaps even the mere intuition
falling under that concept?
That the ground of predication is what is under examination in this
third moment, is attested by passages such as this:
x11“ The judgment of taste has nothing but the form of the purposiveness of
an object (or of the way of representing it) as its ground [zum Grunde]. Every
end, if it is regarded as a ground of satisfaction, always brings an interest
with it, as the determining ground of the judgment about the object of
the pleasure. Thus no subjective end can ground the judgment of
taste. But further no representation of an objective end, i.e. of the
possibility of the object itself in accordance with principles of purposive
connection, hence no concept of the good, can determine the judgment
of taste, because it is an aesthetic judgment and not a cognitive
judgment . . . Thus nothing other than the subjective purposiveness in the
representation of an object without any end (objective or subjective) . . .
can constitute . . . the determining ground [der Bestimmungsgrund] of the
judgment of taste. (v, 221)

As we can see, what is at issue here is the Bestimmungsgrund of the
aesthetic judgment, namely the ground of the determination of the
subject with respect to the predicate, or the ground of the assertion
that the subject falls under the predicate. Since the judgment is cate-
gorical, the ground of predication is to be found in the subject S of the
judgment, ˜˜S is P.™™ Now, as we have seen under the title of quantity, the
subject of an aesthetic judgment is always singular (this rose). So
the ground of the assertion of the predicate is the intuition by way of
which the singular object is given. But according to the first moment

15
On the example cited, see A321“2/B378.
THE CRITICAL SYSTEM
282

(that of quality), the pleasure expressed in the predicate is disinterested:
it is not caused by the existence of the object, nor does it depend on a
moral interest we might take in the existence of that object. Rather, it is a
pleasure elicited by our own mental activity in apprehending the object.
In other words, it is a pleasure we derive from the form of the object
insofar as this form lends itself, when we apprehend it, to the mutually
enhancing agreement of our imagination and our understanding.
Now this feature of the object, that its form is such that apprehending
it or synthesizing it is beneficial to the mutual enhancement of our
imagination and understanding, is what Kant calls, in the text just
quoted, the ˜˜subjective purposiveness in the representation of an object,
without any purpose either subjective or objective.™™ The ground of the
predication, then, in the judgment ˜˜this rose is beautiful,™™ is the intuited
form™s disposition to elicit the mutually enhancing agreement of imagi-
nation and understanding in their apprehension of this form. The form
of the object satisfies a subjective purpose “ the agreement of the imagi-
nation and the understanding, and the pleasure thus elicited. But this
subjective purposiveness of the form does not in any way justify us in
supposing that an intention has actually presided over the creation of
this form, with a view to satisfying this purpose. So the object is formally
purposeful (its form satisfies a purpose: the mutually enhancing play of
imagination and understanding), although we have no concept at all of
how such a purpose might actually have been at work in producing this
object.
Moreover, the purposiveness of the object “ the fact that it satisfies an
immanent purpose of the human mind, that of enhancing its own
pleasurable life “ is also a purposiveness of the mind itself. For again,
what elicits pleasure is the free play and thus the mutual enhancement of
the cognitive capacities (imagination and understanding) in the appre-
hension of the object, together with the feeling that such a free play, and
the feeling it elicits, can be shared by all. The judging person™s state of
mind is therefore itself ˜˜purposive, without the representation of a
purpose.™™ The mental activity at work in apprehending the object
judged to be beautiful is accompanied by the feeling that a purpose is
satisfied by it: the purpose that the mind be precisely in the state it is in.
And yet, here again we have no concept of how such a purpose is
satisfied. Like the form of the object, the state of mind is ˜˜purposive™™
(it satisfies a purpose, that of maintaining the mind precisely in the state
it is in) without the representation of a purpose (i.e. without any deter-
minate concept of this purpose).
ANALYTIC OF THE BEAUTIFUL 283

This twofold purposiveness “ of the object, of the mental state itself “
explains, I think, the title of the third moment of the Analytic of the
Beautiful: ˜˜Third moment of judgments of taste, according to the relation
of the purposes which in them are taken into consideration.™™ The relation
expressed in an aesthetic judgment is that of the purposiveness expressed
in the predicate to the purposiveness expressed in the subject. A pur-
posiveness is expressed in the predicate because the predicate ˜˜beautiful™™
expresses the fact that a pleasure is elicited by the universal commu-
nicability of the mutually enhancing play of the imagination and the
understanding. This purposiveness has its ground in the purposiveness
of the subject of the judgment: the ˜˜purposiveness without a purpose™™ of
the apprehended (synthesized) form of the intuited object.
If this is correct, then the judgment of taste is the culminating point of
the Copernican revolution that began with the first Critique. For the
ground of the assertion of the predicate in the judgment of taste is the
intuited form of the object, precisely insofar as it is synthesized by
the subject. So in the object, what grounds the assertion of the predicate
˜˜beautiful™™ are just those features that depend on the synthesizing
activity of the subject.
This point is confirmed if we now consider the implicit judgment
imbedded in the predicate of the judgment of taste. I suggested earlier
that the predicate ˜˜beautiful™™ might be explained in the following way:
˜˜beautiful™™ means ˜˜such that apprehending it elicits in me a pleasure such
that all judging subjects, in apprehending this same object, ought to agree
with my judgment.™™ The implicit judgment imbedded in the predicate
(˜˜all judging subjects, in apprehending this same object, ought to agree
with my judgment™™) is a categorical judgment: the ground of predication
is to be found in the subject of the judgment, ˜˜all judging subjects.™™ And
yet that ground is not to be found in the concept of a judging subject: it is
not by virtue of a character I know to belong universally to all judging
subjects that I claim that all of them ought to agree with my judgment.
Nor is the ground of the predication to be found in my empirical know-
ledge of judging subjects. Rather, the ground for attributing the predicate
˜˜ought to agree with my judgment™™ to all judging subjects (or, in Kant™s
terms, to ˜˜the whole sphere of those who judge™™), is the capacity I attribute
to all of those who judge, to experience the very same feeling I presently
experience. And my only ground for attributing to them this capacity is
the feeling itself, as I experience it.
Let me recapitulate again. I have argued that according to the moment
of ˜˜relation,™™ the ground of the assertion of the predicate ˜˜beautiful™™ is the
THE CRITICAL SYSTEM
284

˜˜purposiveness without a purpose™™ of the form of the apprehended
object. This purposiveness consists in the form™s capacity to elicit the
mutually enhancing play of imagination and understanding in the appre-
hending subject. But the form of the object elicits such a mutually enhanc-
ing play of cognitive capacities only because it is a synthesized form, a form
that is apprehended as the particular form it is only by virtue of the mental
activity of the apprehending subject. Thus what in the representation of
the object grounds the assertion of the predicate ˜˜beautiful™™ is its depen-
dence on the mental activity of the subject. I have also argued that the
implicit judgment imbedded in the predicate of the aesthetic judgment (˜˜all
judging subjects, upon apprehending this object, ought to experience the
same feeling and thus agree with my judgment™™) is grounded on the
capacity I postulate in all judging subjects (and indeed, as we shall see,
demand of them) to experience the free play of their cognitive capacities
I myself experience in apprehending the object, and thus to share my
feeling and agree with my judgment.
We will have to keep these two features in mind to understand Kant™s
view of the modality of judgments of taste, to which I now turn.


The subjective necessity of judgments of taste
The modality of a judgment of taste, says Kant, is that of necessity. But
what is ˜˜necessary™™? Is it the connection between the predicate and the
subject in the manifest judgment about the object (˜˜this rose is beauti-
ful™™)? Or is it rather the connection between the predicate and the
subject in the implicit judgment about the judging subjects (˜˜all judg-
ing Subjects, upon apprehending this same object, ought to experience
the same pleasure and thus agree with my judgment™™)? If the former,
what is said to be necessary is the connection between the object
considered in its form, and the pleasure I feel in apprehending it. If
the latter, what is said to be necessary is the connection between the
obligation implicitly assigned to all judging subjects (they ˜˜ought to
agree with my judgment™™) and these judging subjects, considered
simply as such.
I submit that Kant wants to assert the necessity of both connections.
He asserts at the outset that the relation between the object and the
satisfaction it elicits is necessary: ˜˜Of the beautiful . . . one thinks that it
has a necessary relation to satisfaction™™ (v, 237). But he then immediately
goes on to assert the necessity of the agreement of all judging subjects
with my judgment, taken as the example of a rule:
ANALYTIC OF THE BEAUTIFUL 285

[The] necessity that is thought in an aesthetic judgment . . . can only be
called exemplary, i.e. a necessity of the assent of all to a judgment that is
regarded as an example of a universal rule that one cannot produce.
(v, 237)

Note that the situation here is not parallel to that of quantity. The
quantity of the manifest judgment about the object was different from
that of the implicit judgment about the judging subjects (the former was
singular, the latter universal). In contrast, here the necessity of the latter
(the implicit judgment about the judging subjects) seems to ground the
necessity of the former (the manifest judgment about the object):
because all judging subjects ought to judge as I do, the relation of the
predicate ˜˜beautiful™™ to the subject of the manifest judgment can legiti-
mately be asserted as necessary. We can understand why this is so: what
is beautiful is the object as apprehended, and being beautiful is the same
as being judged to be beautiful. To say that all judging subjects ought
necessarily to agree with my judgment is to say that the object ought
necessarily to be judged beautiful, or that the connection between the
predicate ˜˜beautiful™™ and the object is necessary.
This still does not tell us, however, how we should understand this
modality of necessity. Is the necessity of the connection between ˜˜all
judging subjects™™ and ˜˜ought to agree with my judgment™™ to be under-
stood on the model of the subjective necessity of judgments of experience
(because I claim objective validity for my judgment, I claim that all judg-
ing subjects ought to agree with my judgment)? Or is it to be understood
on the model of a moral imperative: ˜˜All rational beings ought to act in
such and such a way™™ (under the categorical imperative of morality)?
Kant™s response, I suggest, is that both models are relevant. Indeed,
both serve to clarify the crucial notion of a sensus communis on which Kant
will later base his deduction of judgments of taste, namely his justifica-
tion of their claim to (subjective) universality and necessity.
Already in x20 of the fourth moment, Kant states that the subjective
necessity of the judgment of taste is affirmed only under the condition
that there be a common sense, Gemeinsinn. By ˜˜common sense™™ he means
˜˜not any external sense, but rather the effect of the free play of our
cognitive powers™™ (x20, v, 238), that is to say, the feeling that we have of
this free play and of its universal communicability. This is in direct
continuity with what was said in the first two moments of the Analytic
of the Beautiful. As we saw, according to the first moment, the aesthetic
pleasure is a disinterested pleasure elicited in the mind by its own activity
THE CRITICAL SYSTEM
286

in apprehending the object. According to the second moment, this
activity is one of ˜˜free play™™ of imagination and understanding and the
pleasure expressed by the predicate ˜˜beautiful™™ is both a first-order
pleasure taken in this free play, and a second-order pleasure in the
universal communicability of the feeling thus elicited. The agreement
of imagination and understanding in cognition and the universal com-
municability of that agreement provide an argument for at least suppos-
ing the possibility of a similar universal communicability of the state of
mind in the free play of imagination and understanding, and thus a
sensus communis aestheticus as the ground for the aesthetic pleasure
expressed in the predicate ˜˜beautiful.™™ In this context, the obligation
assigned to ˜˜all judging subjects™™ to agree with my judgment is not
analogous to a moral obligation. Rather, it is analogous to the obligation
to submit oneself to the norm of truth (the rule-governed agreement
between imagination and understanding) in cognitive judgments. And
indeed, it is by drawing on the a priori agreement of imagination and
understanding in cognition that Kant initially justifies the supposition of
a common sense as the ground of aesthetic judgments:
One will thus with good reason be able to assume a common sense [so
wird dieser mit Grunde angenommen werden konnen], and without appealing
¨
to psychological observations, but rather as the necessary condition of
the universal communicability of our cognition, which is assumed in
every logic and every principle of cognitions that is not sceptical. (v, 239)

But there is something surprising about this justification. For as we
saw in discussing the second moment, what grounds the subjective
universality and thus also the subjective necessity of cognitive judgments
in the first Critique is not the free agreement of imagination and under-
standing, but their agreement for the production of concepts, that is to
say, according to the rules imposed by the understanding. The fact that
there is such an agreement (not free, but ruled by the understanding)
may perhaps give us reason to believe in the possibility of a similar
agreement even without a concept. But that does not give us sufficient
grounds for affirming that such an agreement exists, and still less that it
necessarily exists. Indeed Kant is more cautious when he writes:
This indeterminate norm of a common sense is really presupposed by
us: our presumption in making judgments of taste proves that. Whether
there is in fact such a common sense, as a constitutive principle of the
possibility of experience, or whether a yet higher principle of reason
only makes it into a regulative principle for us first to produce a common
ANALYTIC OF THE BEAUTIFUL 287

sense in ourselves for higher ends, thus whether taste is an original and
natural faculty, or only the idea of one that is yet to be acquired and is
artificial, so that a judgment of taste, with its requirement [Zumuthung] of
a universal assent, is in fact only a demand of reason to produce such
unanimity in the manner of sensing, and whether the ought, i.e. the
objective necessity of the convergence of everyone™s feeling with that of
each, signifies only the possibility of such agreement, and the judgment
of taste only provides an example of the application of this principle “
this we neither want nor are able yet to investigate here; for now we have
only to resolve the faculty of taste into its elements and to unite them
ultimately in the idea of a common sense. (v, 239“40)

As we can see, here the model for the subjective necessity of the
judgment of taste is no longer the claim to necessary agreement proper
to a judgment of experience, but rather the demand of moral duty. The
a priori agreement of imagination and understanding in cognition
allows us only to accept as possible the ˜˜common sense™™ which would
ground aesthetic judgment; but the request of a universal agreement of
rational agents under the moral law now appears to be a ground to
demand that we cultivate in ourselves the capacity to develop a ˜˜com-
mon sense.™™ As we saw, already in the course of the second moment Kant
maintained that we postulate the ˜˜universal voice™™ under which we
formulate a judgment of taste (cf. v, 216).
Kant does not always clearly distinguish between the mere possibility
of an agreement of everyone with my own evaluation, based on the free
play of imagination and understanding, and the postulated existence of
this agreement, as a capacity which each judging subject has an obliga-
tion to develop in himself and demand of others. But it is important to
keep this distinction in mind in order to free Kant of the burden of an all
too evident objection, which we have already encountered in our exam-
ination of the second moment: if the sensus communis, understood gen-
erically as the universally communicable agreement of imagination and
understanding, is the common ground of cognitive judgments and
aesthetic judgments, why is every cognitive judgment not the occasion
of aesthetic pleasure? On the other hand, if there is merely a kinship, not
a generic identity, between the sensus communis that grounds judgments
of taste (a universally communicable free play and mutual enhancement
of imagination and understanding in apprehending the object and
reflecting upon it, known by feeling) and the sensus communis that
grounds judgments in empirical cognition (a universally communicable
agreement of imagination and understanding in apprehending the
THE CRITICAL SYSTEM
288

object and reflecting upon it, known by virtue of the concepts that
express it, and thus not ˜˜free,™™ but rule governed), why would the latter
be a sufficient ground for admitting the existence of the former? This
objection falls if Kant™s argument for the existence of a sensus communis
grounding aesthetic judgments has the two distinct steps mentioned
above: (1) the universal communicability of the state of mind in cognition
shows that it is possible that the agreement of the imagination and the
understanding, even when it is not ruled and reflected by concepts
(when it is a ˜˜free play™™ eliciting a feeling of pleasure), be universally
communicable; (2) we demand that this agreement should be universally
communicable, and because we demand it, we make it ˜˜as if a duty™™ to
bring it about in ourselves and in others.
These two steps are expressed in the form of a question in the text
quoted above: should we consider the sensus communis as a natural
capacity, or rather as the object of a higher demand of reason that we
develop this capacity in ourselves and in others? The two steps will be
confirmed and amplified in the deduction of the judgment of taste
(although again somewhat ambiguously). In the very short paragraph
entitled ˜˜Deduction of the Judgment of Taste™™ (x38), Kant asserts again that
the claim to subjective universality and necessity of our judgments of taste
has the same ground as the claim to subjective universality and necessity of
judgments of empirical cognition, justified in the first Critique. This is the
first step in the two-step argument summarized above. In x40, Kant adds:

If one was allowed to assume that the mere universal communicability of

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