Kant’s Joke  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Kant’s Joke (German: Kant's Witz) refers to a passing remark Friedrich Nietzsche made in The Gay Science (1882) on Immanuel Kant. It concerns the wisdom found in the prejudices of common man.

English

"Kant’s Joke—Kant wanted to prove, in a way that would dumbfound the common man, that the common man was right: that was the secret joke of this soul. He wrote against the scholars in support of popular prejudice, but for scholars and not for the people."

German

"Kant's Witz. - Kant wollte auf eine "alle Welt" vor den Kopf stossende Art beweisen, dass "alle Welt" Recht habe: - das war der heimliche Witz dieser Seele. Er schrieb gegen die Gelehrten zu Gunsten des Volks-Vorurtheils, aber für Gelehrte und nicht für das Volk."

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Kant’s Joke" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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