About this topic
Summary A variety of topics are covered under this rubric.  In general, most philosophical questions relating to the language of science are of a broadly semantic nature, having to do with the meaning, meaningfulness or reference of scientific discourse about the world.  The question of the meaningfulness (or cognitive significance) of scientific discourse arose in the context of the logical positivists of the Vienna Circle, who proposed a principle of verification (or verifiability theory of meaning).  The logical empiricist successors of logical positivism sought to analyze the semantic content of theoretical discourse on the basis of the connection between theoretical discourse and observational vocabulary, for example, in terms of correspondence rules.  In the context of the "historical turn" associated with Thomas Kuhn, N.R. Hanson and Paul Feyerabend, the idea of meaning variance (conceptual change) came to the fore, as it was argued that the meaning of observational vocabulary depends upon theoretical context, and undergoes variation in the transition between theories.  The idea of meaning variance gave rise to the semantic version of the claim of the incommensurability of scientific theories.  In response to the problem of meaning variance, a number of authors (e.g. Scheffler, Putnam, Kripke) advocated an emphasis on the reference of scientific terms.  In the attempt to show that reference may survive theoretical change, appeal was often made to the "new" or "causal" theory of reference advocated by Kripke.
Key works Two classic references for logical positivist and empiricist approaches to scientific language are Carnap 1936 and Schlick 1936.  Feyerabend's early argument for meaning variance may be found in Feyerabend 1957.  Putnam discusses the question of meaning change in science, proposing a turn to reference in Putnam 1973.  Michael Devitt deals with topics relating to semantic incommensurability in Devitt 1979.  Thomas Kuhn offers his response to some criticism directed against the claim of incommensurability in Kuhn 1983.
Introductions Sankey 2000
  Show all references
Related categories
Subcategories:
354 found
Search inside:
(import / add options)   Sort by:
1 — 50 / 354
Cognitive Significance in Science
  1. A. J. Ayer (1936). Verification and Experience. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 37:137 - 156.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  2. I. Berlin (1938). Verification. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 39:225 - 248.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  3. Jesús P. Zamora Bonilla (2003). Meaning and Testability in the Structuralist Theory of Science. Erkenntnis 59 (1):47 - 76.
    The connection between scientific knowledge and our empirical access to realityis not well explained within the structuralist approach to scientific theories. I arguethat this is due to the use of a semantics not rich enough from the philosophical pointof view. My proposal is to employ Sellars–Brandom's inferential semantics to understand how can scientific terms have empirical content, and Hintikka's game-theoretical semantics to analyse how can theories be empirically tested. The main conclusions are that scientific concepts gain their meaning through `basic (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (6 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  4. Robert Brown & John Watling (1951). Amending the Verification Principle. Analysis 11 (4):87 - 89.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  5. Rudolf Carnap (1937). Testability and Meaning, 1936. Kwartalnik Filozoficzny 14 (1):55-61.
    Remove from this list |
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  6. Rudolf Carnap (1937). Testability and Meaning--Continued. Philosophy of Science 4 (1):1-40.
  7. Rudolf Carnap (1937). Testability and Meaning (Part 2). Philosophy of Science 4 (4):1-40.
  8. Rudolf Carnap (1936). Testability and Meaning. Philosophy of Science 3 (4):419-471.
  9. Rudolf Carnap (1936). Testability and Meaning (Part 1). Philosophy of Science 3 (4):420-71.
  10. Ramon Cirera (1993). The Logical Analysis of Scientific Language According to Carnap. Grazer Philosophische Studien 45:1-19.
    "Testability and Meaning" is one of Carnap's best-known works. It has been usually seen as one of the main sources of the received view of the philosophy of science, and it is normally read in the hght of the tradition it originated. Nevertheless, this reading detaches the text from the philosophical project to which it belongs. This paper aims to situate Camap's article in its proper philosophical place, which is found in the programme initiated in the Logische Syntax, a programme (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  11. Frederick C. Copleston (1950). A Note on Verification. Mind 59 (236):522-529.
    The author, using bertrand russell's "human knowledge": "it's scope and limits", makes a point of departure where russell distinguishes between "meaning" and "significance." the author contends that in using these distinctions in a metaphysical argument, his purpose is not to show whether or not the argument is possible, but to show the problem of validity of metaphysical arguments as the remaining fundamental problem in regards to metaphysics. (staff).
    Remove from this list | Direct download (8 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  12. Alan Donagan (1956). The Verification of Historical Theses. Philosophical Quarterly 6 (24):193-208.
  13. C. J. Ducasse (1936). Verification, Verifiability, and Meaningfulness. Journal of Philosophy 33 (9):230-236.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  14. C. J. Ducasse (1935). Is Scientific Verification Possible in Philosophy? Philosophy of Science 2 (2):121-127.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  15. J. L. Evans (1953). On Meaning and Verification. Mind 62 (245):1-19.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (6 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  16. L. Goddard (1980). Significance, Necessity, and Verification. Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 21 (2):193-215.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  17. Erik Götlind (1954). Ayer on Verification of Negative Statements. Journal of Philosophy 51 (17):490-496.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  18. Carl G. Hempel (1950). Problems and Changes in the Empiricist Criterion of Meaning. 11 Rev. Intern. De Philos 41:41-63.
    The fundamental tenet of modern empiricism is the view that all non-analytic knowledge is based on experience. Let us call this thesis the principle of empiricism. [1] Contemporary logical empiricism has added [2] to it the maxim that a sentence makes a cognitively meaningful assertion, and thus can be said to be either true or false, only if it is either (1) analytic or self-contradictory or (2) capable, at least in principle, of experiential test. According to this so-called empiricist criterion (...)
    Remove from this list |
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  19. Robert G. Hudson (2008). Carnap's Empiricism, Lost and Found. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 43:81-88.
    Recent scholarship (by mainly Michael Friedman, but also by Thomas Uebel) on the philosophy of Rudolf Carnap covering the period from the publication of Carnap’s’ 1928 book Der Logische Aufbau der Welt through to the mid to late 1930’s has tended to view Carnap as espousing a form of conventionalism (epitomized by his adoption of the principle of tolerance) and not a form of empirical foundationalism. On this view, it follows that Carnap’s 1934 The Logical Syntax of Language is the (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  20. Michael Hymers (2005). Going Around the Vienna Circle: Wittgenstein and Verification. Philosophical Investigations 28 (3):205–234.
    I argue that Wittgenstein’s short-lived verificationism (c.1929-30) differed from that of his contacts in the Vienna Circle in not being a reductionist view. It lay the groundwork for his later views that the meaning of a word is determined by its use and that certain "propositions of the form of empirical propositions" (On Certainty, §§96, 401, 402) act as "norm[s] of description" (On Certainty,§§167, 321). He gave it up once he realized that it contradicted his rejection of logical atomism, and (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (9 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  21. Felix Kaufmann (1943). Verification, Meaning, and Truth. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 4 (2):267-284.
  22. M. Lazerowitz (1939). Strong and Weak Verification. Mind 48 (190):202-213.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (8 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  23. Morris Lazerowitz (1950). Strong and Weak Verification II. Mind 59 (235):345-357.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (8 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  24. C. I. Lewis (1954). The Verification Theory of Meaning: A Comment. Philosophical Review 63 (2):193-196.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  25. Sebastian Lutz, Criteria of Empirical Significance: A Success Story.
    The sheer multitude of criteria of empirical significance has been taken as evidence that the pre-analytic notion being explicated is too vague to be useful. I show instead that a significant number of these criteria—by Ayer, Popper, Przełęcki, Suppes, and David Lewis, among others—not only form a coherent whole, but also connect directly to the theory of definition, the notion of empirical content as explicated by Ramsey sentences, and the theory of measurement; two criteria by Carnap and Sober are trivial, (...)
    Remove from this list |
    Translate to English
    | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  26. Margaret MacDonald (1933). Verification and Understanding. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 34:143 - 156.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  27. Benson Mates (1964). On the Verification of Statements About Ordinary Language. In V. C. Chappell (ed.), Ordinary Language: Essays in Philosophical Method. Dover Publications. 161 – 171.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  28. Benson Mates (1958). On the Verification of Statements About Ordinary Language. Inquiry 1 (1-4):161 – 171.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  29. John McDowell (1976). Truth-Conditions, Bivalence, and Verification. In G. Evans & J. McDowell (eds.), Truth and Meaning. Clarendon Press.
    Remove from this list |
    Translate to English
    |
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  30. Alexander Miller (1998). Emotivism and the Verification Principle. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 98 (2):103–124.
    In chapter VI of Language, Truth, and Logic, A.J. Ayer argues that ethical statements are not literally significant. Unlike metaphysical statements, however, ethical statements are not nonsensical: even though they are not literally significant, Ayer thinks that they possess some other sort of significance. This raises the question: by what principle or criterion can we distinguish, among the class of statements that are not literally significant, between those which are genuinely meaningless and those which possess some other, non-literal form of (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  31. David L. Miller (1943). Meaning and Verification. Philosophical Review 52 (6):604-609.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  32. Charles W. Morris (1932). Truth, Action and Verification. The Monist 42 (3):321-329.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  33. Ernest Nagel (1934). Verifiability, Truth, and Verification. Journal of Philosophy 31 (6):141-148.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  34. Everett J. Nelson (1954). The Verification Theory of Meaning. Philosophical Review 63 (2):182-192.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  35. Kai Nielsen (1975). Metaphysics and Verification Revisited. Southwestern Journal of Philosophy 6 (3):75-93.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  36. D. J. O'Connor (1950). Some Consequences of Professor A. J. Ayer's Verification Principle. Analysis 10 (3):67 - 72.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (5 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  37. S. Jack Odell & James F. Zartman (1982). A Defensible Formulation of the Verification Principle. Metaphilosophy 13 (1):65–74.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (6 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  38. L. E. Palmieri (1956). Comments on Verification. Theoria 22 (1):43-48.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  39. L. E. Palmieri (1955). Verification and Descriptive Predicates. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 15 (4):548-550.
  40. W. V. Quine (1996). (1951) The Verification Theory and Reductionism. In The Emergence of Logical Empiricism Garland Publishing.
    Remove from this list | Direct download  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  41. Friedrich Rapp (1975). The Methodological Symmetry Between Verification and Falsification. Journal for General Philosophy of Science 6 (1):139-144.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  42. Sherrilyn Roush (2004). Testability and the Unity of Science. Journal of Philosophy 101 (11):555 - 573.
  43. Bertrand Russell (1937). On Verification: The Presidential Address. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 38:1 - 20.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  44. Howard Sankey (2000). The Language of Science: Meaning Variance and Theory Comparison. Language Sciences 22 (2):117-136.
    The paper gives an overview of key themes of twentieth century philosophical treatment of the language of science, with special emphasis on the meaning variance of scientific terms and the comparison of alternative theories. These themes are dealt with via discussion of the topics of: (a) the logical positivist principle of verifiability and the problem of the meaning of theoretical terms, (b) the postpositivist thesis of semantic incommensurability, and (c) the scientific realist response to incommensurability based on the causal theory (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (2 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  45. Moritz Schlick (1936). Meaning and Verification. Philosophical Review 45 (4):339-369.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (4 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  46. Elliott Sober (1999). Testability. Proceedings and Address of the American Philosophical Association 73 (2):47 - 76.
    That some propositions are testable, while others are not, was a fundamental idea in the philosophical program known as logical empiricism. That program is now widely thought to be defunct. Quine’s (1953) “Two Dogmas of Empiricism” and Hempel’s (1950) “Problems and Changes in the Empiricist Criterion of Meaning” are among its most notable epitaphs. Yet, as we know from Mark Twain’s comment on an obituary that he once had the pleasure of reading about himself, the report of a death can (...)
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  47. Newton P. Stallknecht (1937). The Place of Verification in Ethical Theory. Journal of Philosophy 34 (6):150-156.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  48. Alfonso Garcia Suarez (2000). The Verification Principle: Another Puncture. Analysis 60 (267):293-295.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (7 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  49. Alfonso García Suárez (2000). The Verification Principle: Another Puncture. Analysis 60 (267):293–295.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (9 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
  50. Thomas Uebel (2011). Beyond the Formalist Criterion of Cognitive Significance: Philipp Frank's Later Antimetaphysics. Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 1 (1):47-72.
    Remove from this list | Direct download (3 more)  
     
    My bibliography  
     
    Export citation  
1 — 50 / 354