Dans quelle mesure la philosophie du langage ordinaire, faite par des anglophones (usagers de l'English language,) qui réfléchissent sur la langue (language encore) et son usage correct, est-elle liée à l'anglais ? Ainsi, quand elle traite de la nature de la connaissance, se peut-il qu'il s'agisse de questions induites par le terme knowledge (connaissance/savoir) ? Adrian Moore instruit la cohérence d'une réponse négative à partir d'une réflexion sur le « nous » qui parle. Mais il voit dans l'impossibilité de principe (...) pour la philosophie du langage ordinaire de denier toute force à ce lien une bonne raison pour la philosophie analytique aujourd'hui de ne pas s'y laisser réduire. (shrink)
The interpretation of Kant's Critical philosophy as a version of traditional idealism has a long history. In spite of Kant's and his commentators’ various attempts to distinguish between traditional and transcendental idealism, his philosophy continues to be construed as committed (whether explicitly or implicitly and whether consistently or inconsistently) to various features usually associated with the traditional idealist project. As a result, most often, the accusation is that his Critical philosophy makes too strong metaphysical and epistemological claims.
Kant, in his third Critique, confronts the issue of how rule-governed objective judgement is possible. He argues that it requires a particular kind of aesthetic response to one's experience. I dub this response 'the Feeling of Unity', and I raise the question whether it is a type of inexpressible knowledge. Using David Bell's account of these matters as a touchstone, I argue that it is.
In this essay I consider the argument that Bernard Williams advances in ‘The Makropolus Case’ for the meaninglessness of immortality. I also consider various counter-arguments. I suggest that the more clearly these counter-arguments are targeted at the spirit of Williams's argument, rather than at its letter, the less clearly they pose a threat to it. I then turn to Nietzsche, whose views about the eternal recurrence might appear to make him an opponent of Williams. I argue that, properly interpreted, these (...) views in fact make him an ally. (shrink)
[A. W. Moore] There are criteria of ineffability whereby, even if the concept of ineffability can never serve to modify truth, it can sometimes (non-trivially) serve to modify other things, specifically understanding. This allows for a reappraisal of the dispute between those who adopt a traditional reading of Wittgenstein's Tractatus and those who adopt the new reading recently championed by Diamond, Conant, and others. By maintaining that what the nonsense in the Tractatus is supposed to convey is ineffable understanding, rather (...) than ineffable truth, we can do considerable justice to each of these readings. We can also do considerable justice to the Tractatus. /// [Peter Sullivan] Moore proposes to cut between 'traditional' and 'new' approaches to the Tractatus, suggesting that Wittgenstein's intention is to convey, through the knowing use of nonsense, ineffable understanding. I argue, first, that there is indeed room for a proposal of Moore's general kind. Secondly, though, I question whether Moore's actual proposal is not more in tune with Wittgenstein's later thought than with the attitude of the Tractatus. (shrink)
In this bold and innovative new work, Adrian Moore provides a refreshing but challenging new interpretation of Kant's moral philosophy and argues that it can enrich our understanding of a central problem in contemporary ethical debate: the problem of rationality. Noble in Reason, Infinite in Faculty is essential reading for all those interested in Kant, ethics and philosophy of religion.
The author begins with an outline of Bernard William's moral philosophy, within which he locates William's notorious doctrine that reflection can destroy ethical knowledge. He then gives a partial defence of this doctrine, exploiting an analogy between ethical judgements and tensed judgements. The basic idea is that what the passage of time does for the latter, reflection can do for the former: namely, prevent the re-adoption of an abandoned point of view (an ethical point of view in the one case, (...) a temporal point of view in the other). In the final section the author says a little about how reflection might do this. Footnotes1 This essay is derived from a lecture entitled ‘Bernard Williams’, delivered at Oxford University in 2000, in the series ‘Oxford Philosophers on Oxford Philosophers’, organized by Peter Hacker and David Wiggins. I am grateful to those who attended the lecture, and to Bernard Williams, for helpful comments. (shrink)
In Michael Dummett's celebrated essay on Gödel's theorem he considers the threat posed by the theorem to the idea that meaning is use and argues that this threat can be annulled. In my essay I try to show that the threat is even less serious than Dummett makes it out to be. Dummett argues, in effect, that Gödel's theorem does not prevent us from "capturing" the truths of arithmetic; I argue that the idea that meaning is use does not require (...) that we be able to "capture" these truths anyway. Towards the end of my essay I relate what I have been arguing first to Dummett's concept of indefinite extensibility and then to some of Wittgenstein's remarks on Gödel's theorem. (shrink)
For over two thousand years thought about the infinite was dominated by Aristotelian hostility to the idea that the infinite could be a legitimate object of mathematical study. Then Cantor's work late in the nineteenth century seemed to overturn this orthodoxy. However, by highlighting ways in which infinitude still could not be brought under the control of mathematicians, Cantor's work may in fact have reinforced the orthodoxy.
Two of W. V. Quine''s most familiar doctrines are his endorsement of the distinction between underdetermination and indeterminacy, and his rejection of the distinction between analytic and synthetic truths. The author argues that these two doctrines are incompatible. In terms wholly acceptable to Quine, and based on the underdetermination/indeterminacy distinction, the author draws an exhaustive and exclusive distinction between two kinds of true sentences, and then argues that this corresponds to the traditional analytic/synthetic distinction. In an appendix the author expands (...) on one aspect of the underdetermination/indeterminacy distinction, as construed here, and discusses, in passing, some of Quine''s more general views on truth. (shrink)
This volume presents a selection of the most important writings in the debate on the nature of meaning and reference which started one hundred years ago with Frege's classic essay "On Sense and Reference." Contributors include Bertrand Russell, P.F. Strawson, W.V. Quine, Donald Davidson, John McDowell, Michael Dummett, Hilary Putnam, Saul Kripke, David Wiggins, and Gareth Evans. The aim of this series is to bring together important recent writings in major areas of philosophical inquiry, selected from a wide variety of (...) sources, mostly periodicals, which may not be conveniently available to the university student or the general reader. (shrink)