antinomy n : a contradiction between two statements that seem equally reasonable
- ăntĭ'nəmē, /ænˈtɪnəmi/, /
Greek αντι-, against, plus νομος, law) literally means the mutual incompatibility, real or apparent, of two laws. It is a term used in logic and epistemology.
The term acquired a special significance in the philosophy of Immanuel Kant, who used it to describe the equally rational but contradictory results of applying to the universe of pure thought the categories or criteria of reason proper to the universe of sensible perception or experience (phenomena). Empirical reason cannot here play the role of establishing rational truths because it goes beyond possible experience and is applied to the sphere of that which transcends it.
For Kant there are four antinomies connected with
- the limitation of the universe in respect of space and time,
- the theory that the whole consists of indivisible atoms (whereas, in fact, none such exist),
- the problem of freedom in relation to universal causality
- the existence of a necessary being
It can also be argued that antinomies do not highlight limitations in the power of logical reasoning. This is because the conclusion that there is a limitation is (supposedly) derived from the antinomy by logical reasoning; therefore any limitation in the validity of logical reasoning imposes a limitation on the conclusion that there is a limitation on logical reasoning. (This is an argument by self-reference.) In short, in terms of the validity of logical reasoning as a whole, antinomies are self-isolating: they are like scattered discontinuities within the field of logic, incapable of casting doubt on anything else but themselves.
This carefree position is incompatible with the principle of explosion. In mathematical logic, antinomies are patently not self-isolating, and are usually seen as disasters for the formal system in which they arise (as Russell's paradox in Frege's work).
- John Watson, Selections from Kant (trans. Glasgow, 1897), pp. 155 foll.
- W. Windelband, History of Philosophy (Eng. trans. 1893)
- H. Sidgwick, Philos. of Kant, lectures x. and xi. (Lond., 1905)
- F. Paulsen, I. Kant (Eng. trans. 1902), pp. 216 foll.
antinomy in Bulgarian: Антиномия
antinomy in Czech: Antinomie
antinomy in Danish: Antinomi
antinomy in German: Antinomie
antinomy in Spanish: Antinomia
antinomy in Italian: Antinomia
antinomy in Hebrew: אנטינומיה
antinomy in Latin: Antinomia
antinomy in Latvian: Antinomija
antinomy in Lithuanian: Antinomija
antinomy in Dutch: Antinomie
antinomy in Japanese: 二律背反
antinomy in Polish: Antynomia
antinomy in Portuguese: Antinomia
antinomy in Russian: Антиномия
antinomy in Serbian: Антиномија
antinomy in Slovak: Antinómia
antinomy in Finnish: Antinomia
antinomy in Swedish: Antinomi
antinomy in Turkish: Çatışkı
antinomy in Ukrainian: Антиномія
antinomy in Chinese: 二律背反
ambiguity, ambivalence, asymmetry, disproportion, disproportionateness, equivocality, equivocation, heresy, heterodoxy, heterogeneity, incoherence, incommensurability, incompatibility, incongruity, inconsistency, inconsonance, irony, irreconcilability, nonconformability, nonconformity, oxymoron, paradox, self-contradiction, unconformability, unconformity, unorthodoxy