Observation Sentences and Enlightened Empiricism in Quine’s philosophy

Ideas Y Valores 63 (154):271-294 (2014)
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Abstract

En este ensayo planteo una dificultad que encuentro en la última propuesta de Quine sobre las oraciones observacionales. Argumento que esta dificultad impide que tales oraciones cumplan el rol que él les asigna en su filosofía y socavan su empirismo ilustrado. Luego exploro tentativamente un resquicio que encuentro en la propia filosofía quineana que eventualmente podría evitar los problemas derivados de dicha dificultad. El precio de seguir el camino apuntado por ese resquicio es, sin embargo, una cierta reinterpretación del espíritu empirista de la filosofía de Quine. In this paper I set out a problem I find in Quine's last proposal on observation sentences. I argue that this problem prevents those sentences to play the role he ascribes to them in his philosophy and undermines his enlightened empiricism. Then I tentatively explore an option I find in Quine's own philosophy which can eventually avoid the issues raised by that problem. The price to pay in following this option, though, is a certain reinterpretation of the empiricist spirit of Quine's philosophy. Apresenta-se uma dificuldade na última proposta de Quine sobre as orações observacionais. Argumenta-se que essa dificuldade impede que essas orações cumpram o papel que ele concede a elas em sua filosofia e debilitam seu empirismo ilustrado. Explora-se tentativamente um resquício na própria filosofia quineana que eventualmente poderia evitar os problemas derivados dessa dificuldade. O preço de seguir o caminho indicado por esse resquício é, contudo, certa interpretação do espírito empirista da filosofia de Quine

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Ignacio Avila
Universidad Nacional de Colombia

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References found in this work

On the Very Idea of a Conceptual Scheme.Donald Davidson - 1973 - Proceedings and Addresses of the American Philosophical Association 47:5-20.
Epistemology Naturalized.W. V. Quine - 1969 - In Willard van Orman Quine (ed.), Ontological Relativity and Other Essays. Columbia University Press.
Pursuit of truth.Willard Van Orman Quine - 1990 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
On the Very Idea of a Conceptual Scheme.Donald Davidson - 1974 - In Robert B. Talisse & Scott F. Aikin (eds.), The Pragmatism Reader: From Peirce Through the Present. Princeton University Press. pp. 286-298.

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