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  1. Quine’s Intuition: Why Quine’s Early Nominalism is Naturalistic.James Andrew Smith - 2020 - Erkenntnis 85 (5):1199-1218.
    According to a growing consensus in the secondary literature on Quine, the judgment Quine makes in favor of the nominalism outlined in “Steps Toward a Constructive Nominalism” is in tension with the naturalism he later adopts. In this paper, I show the consensus view is mistaken by showing that Quine’s judgment is rooted in a naturalistic standard of clarity. Moreover, I argue that Quine late in his career is committed to accepting one plausible reading of his judgment in 1947. In (...)
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  • The American Reception of Logical Positivism: First Encounters, 1929–1932.Sander Verhaegh - 2020 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 1 (10):106-142.
    This paper reconstructs the American reception of logical positivism in the early 1930s. I argue that Moritz Schlick (who had visiting positions at Stanford and Berkeley between 1929 and 1932) and Herbert Feigl (who visited Harvard in the 1930-31 academic year) played a crucial role in promoting the *Wissenschaftliche Weltauffassung*, years before members of the Vienna Circle, the Berlin Group, and the Lvov-Warsaw school would seek refuge in the United States. Building on archive material from the Wiener Kreis Archiv, the (...)
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  • Sign and Object : Quine’s forgotten book project.Sander Verhaegh - 2019 - Synthese 196 (12):5039-5060.
    W. V. Quine’s first philosophical monograph, Word and Object, is widely recognized as one of the most influential books of twentieth century philosophy. Notes, letters, and draft manuscripts at the Quine Archives, however, reveal that Quine was already working on a philosophical book in the early 1940s; a project entitled Sign and Object. In this paper, I examine these and other unpublished documents and show that Sign and Object sheds new light on the evolution of Quine’s ideas. Where “Two Dogmas (...)
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  • Quine on the Nature of Naturalism.Sander Verhaegh - 2017 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 55 (1):96-115.
    Quine's metaphilosophical naturalism is often dismissed as overly “scientistic.” Many contemporary naturalists reject Quine's idea that epistemology should become a “chapter of psychology” and urge for a more “liberal,” “pluralistic,” and/or “open-minded” naturalism instead. Still, whenever Quine explicitly reflects on the nature of his naturalism, he always insists that his position is modest and that he does not “think of philosophy as part of natural science”. Analyzing this tension, Susan Haack has argued that Quine's naturalism contains a “deep-seated and significant (...)
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  • Blurring Boundaries: Carnap, Quine, and the Internal–External Distinction.Sander Verhaegh - 2017 - Erkenntnis 82 (4):873-890.
    Quine is routinely perceived as saving metaphysics from Carnapian positivism. Where Carnap rejects metaphysical existence claims as meaningless, Quine is taken to restore their intelligibility by dismantling the former’s internal–external distinction. The problem with this picture, however, is that it does not sit well with the fact that Quine, on many occasions, has argued that metaphysical existence claims ought to be dismissed. Setting aside the hypothesis that Quine’s metaphysical position is incoherent, one has to conclude that his views on metaphysics (...)
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  • Cognitive metaphysics.Lieven Decock - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 11:1700.
    In recent years philosophers have been interested in the methodology of metaphysics. Most of these developments are related to formal work in logic or physics, often against the backdrop of the Carnap-Quine debate on ontology. Drawing on Quine’s later work, I argue that a psychological or cognitive perspective on metaphysical topics may be a valuable addition to contemporary metametaphysics. The method is illustrated by means of cognitive studies of the notions “identity,” “vagueness,” and “object” and is compared to other extant (...)
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  • Working from Within: The Nature and Development of Quine's Naturalism.Sander Verhaegh - 2018 - New York: Oxford University Press.
    During the past few decades, a radical shift has occurred in how philosophers conceive of the relation between science and philosophy. A great number of analytic philosophers have adopted what is commonly called a ‘naturalistic’ approach, arguing that their inquiries ought to be in some sense continuous with science. Where early analytic philosophers often relied on a sharp distinction between science and philosophy—the former an empirical discipline concerned with fact, the latter an a priori discipline concerned with meaning—philosophers today largely (...)
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  • Setting Sail: The Development and Reception of Quine’s Naturalism.Sander Verhaegh - 2018 - Philosophers' Imprint 18:1-24.
    Contemporary analytic philosophy is dominated by metaphilosophical naturalism, the view that philosophy ought to be continuous with science. This naturalistic turn is for a significant part due to the work of W. V. Quine. Yet, the development and the reception of Quine’s naturalism have never been systematically studied. In this paper, I examine Quine’s evolving naturalism as well as the reception of his views. Scrutinizing a large set of unpublished notes, correspondence, drafts, papers, and lectures as well as published responses (...)
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