Published online by Cambridge University Press: 28 July 2010
The reception of Kant's first Critique, the Critique of Pure Reason, by the main members of the German idealistic movement - that is, by Johann Gottlieb Fichte (1762-1814), Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling (1775-1854), and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831) - is a complex and complicated story that is intimately connected with the history of the controversies to which the first Critique gave rise. Kant's Critique of Pure Reason was not an immediate philosophical success. On the contrary, in the first couple of years after its appearance in 1781, there was, much to Kant's disappointment, little public reaction, and most of it was rather hostile, like the notorious review by Garve and Feder. This led Kant then to publish, in 1783, the Prolegomena, most of which he had already written down before the publication of the Critique of Pure Reason (cf. 23:362ff.) with the explicit hope of making his teachings more accessible (4:261, 263f.). Then, four years later (1787), and again reacting to what he thought to be misunderstandings about the foundations of his theoretical philosophy (cf. footnote to the Preface of the Metaphysical Foundations, 4:447ff.), he published a second edition of the Critique in which considerable parts of the original work were rewritten.