Penn Arts & Sciences Logo

Uygar Abaci


BSc in Industrial Engineering (Istanbul Technical University)

MA in Modern European Philosophy (Middlesex University)

Dissertation Title: 

 Kant’s Theory of Modality

Research Interests

  • Kant
  • Early Modern Philosophy
  • Ancient Philosophy

I am basically interested in Kant’s understanding of modal concepts such as possibility, actuality and necessity. I am currently working on the development of Kant's theory of modality from his precritical works such as New Elucidation(1755), The Only Possible Argument (1763) and Inquiry (1764) to the Critique of Pure Reason (1781) itself. Since Kant expresses most of his views on the issue in the context of his criticism of the previous versions of the ontological argument for the existence of God, my project also requires a research into the history of onto-theology from St. Anselm to Kant's immediate predecessors such as Leibniz and Wolff. After extracting a coherent and positive theory ofmodality from Kant’s critical texts, I will focus more on the implications of this theory on Kant’s practical philosophy and his entire critical project, i.e., how, for instance, such theory of modality enables Kant to reframe the theoretically problematic ideas such as God, freedom and immortality as practical postulates, and thereby to replace dogmatic rationalist metaphysics with a moral one in the Critique of Practical Reason and elsewhere.

Selected Publications

"Artistic Sublime Revisited: Reply to Robert Clewis," Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, forthcoming in Spring 2010

“Kant’s Theses on Existence,” British Journal for History of Philosophy, vol.16: no.3, August 2008

“Kant’s Justified Dismissal of Artistic Sublimity,” Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism, vol. 66: no.3 Summer 2008

(co-translator) Kant's Remarks on "Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and the Sublime", in Observations on the Feeling of the Beautiful and the Sublime and Other Writings, edit. Paul Guyer and Patrick Frierson, forthcoming from Cambridge UP, 2010