Actualist fallacies, from fax machines to lunar journeys

Philosophy and Literature 34 (1):pp. 173-187 (2010)
Abstract
Already in 1863, Jules Verne knew about Caselli's "pantelegraphy," which was what he described as a "photographic telegraphy, invented during the last century by Professor Giovanni Caselli of Florence."1 Following the mistaken belief that facsimile machines could not been invented until well after the nineteenth century, and wrongly assuming that Caselli was a fictional inventor, merely a figment of Verne's most productive fertile imagination (as such imaginative elements characterize his latter writings), some of Verne's readers mistakenly ascribed to him the discovery of the possibility of the fax machine. They thus committed what I will call soon "a reversed actualist fallacy."In challenging actualist mistakes ..
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