Study Tools


Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics is a philosophical work written by German philosopher Immanuel Kant and published in 1783. It was primarily intended to clarify and simplify what was said in Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason, which was met mostly with bewilderment when it was first published in 1781. Readers generally failed to appreciate the originality of Kant’s ideas, including his belief that rationalist metaphysics—the main occupation of philosophers in Germany at the time—could be dismissed entirely, which proved to be too revolutionary a concept.

In Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics, Kant reconceives the purpose of metaphysics as seeking to understand how knowledge is structured, and consequently how the various concepts of our mental faculties are organized. This was an important step for philosophy, since after Kant published his work there was been less interest in making broad claims about the nature of the universe and greater emphasis on determining what we can know and on what grounds we can claim to know it.

Read the overall summary, the overall analysis, and three Question & Answers about key ideas in Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics. Or, learn more by studying SparkNotes guides to other works by Immanuel Kant.


Upgrade to PLUS and get instant access to all the study tools

Upgrade to PLUS and get instant access to all the study tools