The Meaning of “Interest” and its Ratio with the Beautiful According to Kant's View

Document Type : Scientific-research


1 PhD student in Philosophy of Art,Faculty of Law, Theology and Political Sciences, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran

2 Associate Professor in Philosophy, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

3 Associate Professor in Philosophy, North Tehran Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran


Immanuel Kant in Critique of the Power of Judgment has formulated logical function of the judgment of taste according to moments of quality, quantity, relation and modality. In explaining the quality of the judgment of taste, he introduces disinterested satisfaction and dissatisfaction as the object of the faculy of taste, and in this respect distinguishes the beautiful and its related judgment from the interested pleasure of the agreeable and the good. Despite the fact that Kant has explained the meaning of the interest in the field of practical criticism, he defines the interest as a satisfaction with “the existence of an object” in third critique. Such a definition denies any possibility of connection between satisfaction with the beautiful and faculty of desire. However, in §41 and §42 of third critique, he discusses the Possibility of “an empirical and intellectual interest in the beautiful”. The inclination to repeat the encounter with the artistic matter as well as the beauty of nature on the one hand and the feeling of disinterested satisfaction with the existence of the object on the other hand, creates an apparent contradiction in the relationship between interest and the beautiful. The present essay intends to eliminate or at least reveal the probable complexity of reading Kant's definition about interest and possibility of linking it with the beautiful in his aesthetics.


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