Interpreting bradley: the critique of fact-pluralism

History and Philosophy of Logic 9 (2):205-223 (1988)
Abstract
The typically dismissive treatment of Bradleian idealism, to the extent that it is based on philosophical criticism rather than historical bias, suffers from a failure to distinguish Bradley's negative views from his positive doctrines. But the intermingling of the two plays havoc in Bradley's own presentation, so that proper interpretation requires a particularly aggressive approach to the texts. Specifically, in denying a real multiplicity of facts, Bradley, though he may seem to be, is not attacking the commonsense belief that there are many and disparate facts. His claim, as is confirmed by an examination of the analysis of judgement in The principles of logic, is that the facts ordinarily recognized are not those of the bona fide fact-pluralist, e.g. Mill. By getting Bradley's position straight, it becomes possible to tell an illuminating story about the early formation of ?analytic? philosophy, with its often bewildering faith in the ontological significance of logic
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