Quinean Naturalism in Question

Philo 11 (1):5-18 (2008)
This paper is a critical discussion of Quine’s naturalist credos: (1) physicalism; (2) there is no first philosophy; (3) philosophy is continuous with science; and (4) the only responsible theory of the world as a whole is scientific theory. The aim is to show that Quine’s formulations admit of two readings: a strong reading (often Quine’s own) which is compatible with reductive forms of naturalism but implausible; and a mild reading which is plausible but suggestive of more liberal forms of naturalism. The paper ends by claiming that naturalism is a normative doctrine that is inconsistent by its own lights
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DOI 10.5840/philo20081111
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