A Companion to W. V. O. Quine by Gilbert Harman, Ernest Lepore

By Gilbert Harman, Ernest Lepore

This spouse brings jointly a staff of top figures in modern philosophy to supply an in-depth exposition and research of Quine’s vast impression throughout philosophy’s many subfields, highlighting the breadth of his paintings, and revealing his persisted importance today.

  • Provides an in-depth account and research of W.V.O. Quine’s contribution to American Philosophy, and his place as one of many overdue twentieth-century’s so much influential analytic philosophers
  • Brings jointly newly-commissioned essays by way of best figures inside of modern philosophy
  • Covers Quine’s paintings throughout philosophy of common sense, philosophy of language, ontology and metaphysics, epistemology, and more
  • Explores his paintings relating to the origins of analytic philosophy in the USA, and to the historical past of philosophy extra broadly
  • Highlights the breadth of Quine’s paintings around the self-discipline, and demonstrates the continued effect of his paintings in the philosophical community

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One message of Quine’s critique, then, is that even this relatively deflationary conception of the a priori is untenable. Quine’s specific arguments against the received view of analyticity are discussed in detail elsewhere in this volume. 6 We have already discussed Quine’s insistence that our practice of holding fast to mathematics and logic does not require us to posit a deep distinction between empirical and non-empirical truths. ”7 A problem in the theory of knowledge to which the logical positivists devoted a great deal of attention is this: given that scientific hypotheses are shot through with theoretical terms such as “electron” and “proton,” terms that never occur in the observation reports that are cited as evidence for those hypotheses, how do the observation reports come to bear on the hypotheses in the first place?

But, if so, how do we know this? Clearly, we cannot know a priori that we cannot know anything a priori. But this can perhaps be known a priori. If so, there is a priori knowledge. ╇ Empiricism Before Quine Earlier empiricists thought that there is a priori knowledge, for example in logic and mathematics. But they held that we could only know a priori what is expressed by so-called analytic propositions – and that logical and mathematical propositions are analytic. J. O. Quine, First Edition.

Notice that the position of a belief within the web need not correlate with how confident one is that it is true. Perhaps I am extremely confident that Team 19 thomas kelly A will beat Team B in tonight’s game, but when I observe otherwise I will unhesitatingly resolve the conflict by giving up my prior belief about the outcome of the game. This is relatively easy for me to do, inasmuch as my belief that Team A will win the game was hardly fundamental to my view of the world, despite the confidence with which I held it.

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