Polanyi and Peirce on the Critical Method

Tradition and Discovery 38 (3):13-30 (2011)
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This essay points to parallel criticisms made by Charles Peirce and Polanyi against the “critical method”or “method of doubt.” In an early set of essays (1868–1869) and in later work, Peirce claimed that the Cartesian method of doubt is both philosophically bankrupt and useless because practitioners do not apply the method upon the criteria of doubting itself. Likewise, in his 1952 essay “The Stability of Beliefs” and in Personal Knowledge, Polanyi charges practitioners of the critical method with a failure to apply the method rigorously enough. Polanyi contends that “critical” philosophers apply the method of doubt only to beliefs they find distasteful and rarely ever to the tacit beliefs that make doubt possible.



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Hume and Peirce on the Ultimate Stability of Belief.Ryan Pollock & David W. Agler - 2016 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 97 (2):245-269.
Critical Reflection and Common-Sense Beliefs.Francesco Poggiani - 2017 - European Journal of Pragmatism and American Philosophy 9 (2).

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