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Kant, Immanuel (1724-1804)

German philosopher who revolutionized modern philosophy in an effort to counter the skeptical arguments of Hume and provide a firm basis for human knowledge and morality. Kant used transcendental arguments to show that human beings apply synthetic- a priori judgments as the preconditions for any possible experience.

For a discussion of his life and works, see Kant.

Kelsen, Hans (1881-1973)

Austrian legal philosopher who wrote the constitution adopted by the Austrian republic in 1920. Kelsen rejected both natural law theory and legal positivism in Allgemeine Staatslehre (General Theory of Law and State) (1925) and Reine Rechtslehre (Introduction to the Problems of Legal Theory) (1934). Kelsen's own view, most fully developed in the posthumous Allgemeine Theorie der Normen (General Theory of Norms) (1975), traced the legitimacy of social legislation back to a fundamental "ground rule" {Ger. Grundnorm} whose universal status is independent of morality.

Recommended Reading: David Dyzenhaus, Legality and Legitimacy: Carl Schmitt, Hans Kelsen and Hermann Heller in Weimar (Oxford, 2000) and Essays in Honor of Hans Kelsen, ed. by California Law Review Staff (Rothman, 1971).

Also see EB and Austria-Forum.

Kemerling, Garth (1948- )

American philosopher. Since completing a program in the history of modern philosophy at the University of Iowa in 1974, Kemerling has taught a variety of undergraduate courses in philosophy and the humanities, served on the editorial staff of Studies in Short Fiction, and written about John Locke, ethical development, and the practice of teaching philosophy. During the past fifteeen years, he has been occupied with the development of these on-line materials in support of philosophical learning. For additional information, see the curriculum vitae elsewhere on this site.

Kepler, Johannes (1571-1630)

German astronomer who modified the heliocentric views of Copernicus by postulating that planets move in elliptical (not circular) orbits with the sun at one focus, each of them sweeping through arcs of equal area in equal times. Despite his penchant for neoplatonic explanations, Kepler's achievement, published in Astronomia Nova (A New Astronomy based on Causes) (1609) and Harmonia Mundi (The Harmony of the World) (1618), provided an important step toward the comprehensive mathematical theory of celestial motion developed by Newton.

Recommended Reading: Johannes Kepler, Epitome of Copernican Astronomy, tr. by Charles Glenn Wallis (Prometheus, 1995); Max Caspar, Kepler, tr. by C. Doris Hellman (Dover, 1993); Bruce Stephenson, Kepler's Physical Astronomy (Princeton, 1994); Charlotte Methuen, Kepler's Tübingen: Stimulus to a Theological Mathematics (Ashgate, 1998); and Alexandre Koyre, Astronomical Revolution: Copernicus - Kepler - Borelli (Dover, 1992).

Also see The Galileo Project, SEP, MMT, WSB, EB, and Austria-Forum.

Keynes, John Maynard (1883-1946)

English economist who developed economic theories that were widely accepted during the twentieth century. Keynes was the author of The Economic Consequences of the Peace (1919), Treatise on Money (1930), and General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money (1936). His A Treatise on Probability (1921) was an important contribution to the classical theory regarding the logical probability of propositions.

Recommended Reading: John Maynard Keynes, A Tract on Monetary Reform (Prometheus, 2000); D. E. Moggridge, Keynes (Toronto, 1993); John Bryan Davis, Keynes's Philosophical Development (Cambridge, 1994); and Mark Blaug, John Maynard Keynes: Life, Ideas, Legacy (Palgrave, 1990).

Also see EB and MMT.

Kierkegaard, Søren (1813-1855)

Danish philosopher who criticized the idealism of Hegel and emphasized the consequences of human freedom, earning him a reputation as a forerunner of existentialism.

For a discussion of his life and works, see Kierkegaard.

Kim, Jaegwon (1934- )

American philosopher who explores the limitations of theories of strict psychophysical identity. Kim's work on this and other contemporary metaphysical and epistemological issues is well-represented by the papers collected in Supervenience and Mind: Selected Philosophical Essays (1993).

Recommended Reading: Jaegwon Kim, Philosophy of Mind (Westview, 1996) and Jaegwon Kim, Mind in a Physical World: An Essay on the Mind-Body Problem and Mental Causation (Bradford, 2000).

Also see Ned Block.


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Last modified 29 December 2011.
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