Concepts and Reality in the History of Philosophy: Tracing a by Fiona Ellis

By Fiona Ellis

This e-book strains a deep false impression in regards to the relation of suggestions and truth within the background of philosophy. It exposes the effect of the error within the considered Locke, Berkeley, Kant, Nietzche and Bradley, and means that the answer are available in Hegelian concept. Ellis argues that the therapy proposed exemplifies Hegel's dialectical strategy. this is often a major contribution to this quarter of philosophy.

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Extra resources for Concepts and Reality in the History of Philosophy: Tracing a Philosophical Error From Locke to Bradley (Routledge Advances in the History of Philosophy)

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It remains unclear whether he would be prepared to allow that we have some kind of grasp upon reality, and if so, how we are to comprehend the nature of this grasp. We can begin to get an idea of how Nietzsche seeks to address these problems by examining his remarks on truth. He poses the following question: What then is truth? A moveable host of metaphors, metonymies, and anthropomorphisms: in short, a sum of human relations which have been poetically and rhetorically intensified, transferred, and embellished, and which, after long usage, seem to a people to be fixed, canonical, and binding.

First, if this is all that Nietzsche was wanting to say, his claim would be true, albeit unremarkably so. Second, and more importantly, it is an interpretation which fits rather awkwardly with some of the other things he says in this extract – things which suggest that he is not simply concerned with distinguishing between a perceiving or thinking subject and the object perceived or thought about. Of particular relevance are his claims that an adequate expression of an object in a subject is a contradictory impossibility, that the relation between subject and object involves a stammering translation into a completely foreign tongue, and that between these two spheres there is no causality and no correctness.

The implication then is that any reference to God in an account of the nature of the things we perceive is going to be quite without meaning. It will be remembered that Berkeley is happy to allow that we do not have an idea of material substance – unsurprisingly so, given his adherence to a framework which excludes the possibility of there being anything the idea could be of. At first sight then, his denial that we have an idea of God suggests that God and material substance are on the same level in this respect, in which case, we might wonder whether his position is going to constitute a significant advance upon that of the materialist.

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