I was reading critique of pure reason (the chapter that deals with the categories of judgments) I can not distinguish the difference between a negative judgment and an indefinite judgment, for example between :

  • Kant is not English (Negative)
  • Kant is non-English (Limitation/Indefinite)

This may seem silly but I can't get the distinction : as for me this is the exact same thing.

  • Hello. Could you a more precise reference and/or quotation? I don't see that Kant wrote about " indefinite" judgments. Apr 16, 2015 at 18:10

1 Answer 1


The actual sentence as such doesn't matter; it's a certain perspective that the sentence can carry - the negative or indefinite judgement; and it's keyed by the form of the sentence.

A positive judgement affirms the positive: Kant is German. Similarly a negative judgement affirms the negative: Kant is not German.

The first sentence says he is German but says nothing about what else he could be - he may have dual nationality for instance; similarly the second sentence though saying he is not German, doesn't say what he is. It's in this sense the sentences are seen as indefinite.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .