Ontological relativity without the rabbit

Introduction In his essay (appropriately) titled 'Ontological Relativity', Willard Quine introduced the notion that there is no such thing as a fixed, standard ontology, but instead ontology must be relativised, so each individual has one or more ontologies unique to them, and that we use language as a means to (where possible) translate between them.  … Continue reading Ontological relativity without the rabbit

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Against Standard Ontologies

1 Introduction It is a truism that lay persons rush in where experts fear to tread. We are too well aware of the many enthusiasts who insist that they have built a perpetual motion machine, that they can square the circle, and so on and so forth. Where philosophers have long concluded that there can be no such … Continue reading Against Standard Ontologies

Paradigm shifts, perspective, impressionism, epistemology

Introduction What I want to talk about today is Kuhn's concept of paradigms and paradigm shifts.  This much-misunderstood theory of science is often popularised as claiming that science progresses not by orderly development and deduction from evidence, but rather as a form of beauty contest, with current orthodoxy being that which happens to be most … Continue reading Paradigm shifts, perspective, impressionism, epistemology

It came from beyond an epistemic barrier . . .

Epistemic Barriers - this time in English!  1 Introduction I admit it.  On Epistemic Barriers is (though I say it myself) a rather profound piece of work, containing some very important philosophical ideas.  Unfortunately, it is also profoundly hard to read.  I made the mistake of writing it in the impenetrable style of some of … Continue reading It came from beyond an epistemic barrier . . .