The Methods of Contemporary Thought: Translated from the German by Peter Caws

The Methods of Contemporary Thought: Translated from the German by Peter Caws

by J.M. Bochenski

Paperback(Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1965)

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Professor Bochenski, as he himself points out in the prologue, is a logician; he is best known in England and the United States for his work in the history of logic, and more recently in Soviet and East European philosophy. But he has taught philosophy for many years - in Rome, in Switzerland, and on a number of visits to the United States - and in this book provides an elementary introduction to contemporary work in the field. As a means to this end he has chosen to deal with four alternative methods employed by philosophers in the twentieth century. Philosophical methodology has not attracted much attention, in English­ speaking circles, as a distinct branch of the discipline of philosophy; the term "methodologist", if used at all, would ordinarily be taken to refer to somebody concerned with scientific rather than philosophical method. When, therefore, Professor Bochenski refers, as he frequently does, to "contemporary methodologists", meaning people who debate the re­ spective merits of phenomenology and mathematical logic as ways of approaching the world, the phrase has an odd ring. But philosophical methodology really makes a great deal more sense than scientific method­ ology. In science methodology is almost superfluous; given all the avail­ able information and a reasonably clear idea of what is wanted, there is usually not much ambiguity as to the means of getting it, or not much that could be resolved by mere argument.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9789401035804
Publisher: Springer Netherlands
Publication date: 11/09/2011
Edition description: Softcover reprint of the original 1st ed. 1965
Pages: 145
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 8.78(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

I Introduction.- 1. Terminology.- Ontological Terminology.- Psychological Terminology.- Semiotic Terminology.- Terminology of the Theory of Knowledge.- 2. Logic, Methodology and Science.- Logic.- Methodology.- Science and Logic.- Division of the Work.- II The Phenomenological Method.- 3. General Remarks.- Historical Preliminaries.- Methodological Preliminaries.- Essential Characteristics of Phenomenology.- Justification of the Phenomenological Method.- 4. “Back to the Things Themselves”.- The Observation of Essence.- Objectivism.- The Subjective Thought of Kierkegaard.- The Exclusion of Theory and Tradition.- Positive Principles of the Observation of Essence.- 5. The Object of Phenomenological Investigation.- The Phenomenon.- The Exclusion of Existence.- Essence.- Essence and Meaning.- The Phenomenology of Existence.- On the Newer “Deeper” Phenomenology.- III Semiotic Methods.- 6. General Remarks.- Methodological Preliminaries.- Historical Preliminaries.- General Justification of Linguistic Analysis.- The Three Dimensions of the Sign.- The Semiotic Concept of the Word.- 7. Formalism.- Preliminary Orientation.- Calculation.- Application of Calculation to Non-Mathematical Objects.- Eidetic and Operational Meaning.- Models.- The Nature of Formalism.- The Justification of Formalism.- Artificial Languages.- 8. Rules of Syntactic Meaning.- The Construction of Language.- The Idea of a Syntactic Category.- Functors and Arguments.- Examples of Syntactic Nonsense.- 9. Semantic Functions and Types.- The Two Semantic Functions of the Sign.- Speaking the Unspeakable.- Denotation and Meaning.- Semantic Types.- On the Use of Quotation Marks.- 10. Semantic Meaning and Verifiability.- The Methodological Significance of the Problem.- The Verifiability Thesis.- What does “Verifiable” Mean?.- The Principle of Intersubjectivity.- Verifiability of Generalizations.- 11. Example of Semantic Methods in Practice.- Tarski: The Concept of True Sentence in Everyday or Colloquial Language.- IV The Axiomatic Method.- 12. General Remarks.- The Structure of the Indirect Acquisition of Knowledge.- Law and Rule.- Infallible and Fallible Rules of Inference.- Historical Preliminaries.- Plan of Exposition.- 13. The Axiomatic System.- Preliminary Features of the Axiomatic System.- Construction of an Axiomatic System of Statements.- Requirements for an Axiomatic System.- Constructional Systems.- Progressive and Regressive Deduction.- 14. Mathematical Logic.- Methodological Significance.- History of Mathematical Logic.- Essential Features of Mathematical Logic.- The Relevance of Mathematical Logic to Non-Logical Axiomatic Systems.- The Relativity of Logical Systems.- Implication and Deducibility.- 15. Definition and Concept Formation.- Basic Types of Definition.- Types of Syntactic Definition.- Definition by Incorporation into the Axiomatic System.- Semantic Definitions.- Real Definition.- 16. Example of the Axiomatic Method in Practice.- Axiomatization of the Sentential Logic of Hilbert and Ackermann.- V Reductive Methods.- 17. General Remarks.- Historical Preliminaries.- The Concept of Reduction and its Types.- Regressive Reduction and the Concept of Explanation.- Verification.- The Reductive Sciences.- 18. The Structure of the Natural Sciences.- Protocol Statements.- Development of the Natural Sciences.- Verification.- Experience and Thought.- Schematic Representation.- The Copernican Theory.- Examples of Verification.- 19. Types of Explanatory Statements.- Types of Condition.- Causal and Teleological Explanation.- Functional Laws.- Statistical Laws.- 20. Induction.- Authentic and Spurious Induction.- Types of Induction.- Mill’s Methods.- The Presuppositions of Mill’s Methods.- Induction and System.- The Rule of Simplicity.- Summary. Philosophical Interpretations.- 21. Probability and Statistics.- The Two Meanings of “Probability”.- Statistics.- Interdependence of Phenomena.- Tables of Correlation.- Correlation and Probability.- 22. Historical Method.- Natural Science and History.- Point of Departure.- Choice of Data.- Interpretation.- Historical Criticism.- Historical Explanation.- Final Remarks.- Epilogue Guide to Further Reading.- Index of Persons.- Index of Subjects.

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