On Scientific Representation: From Kant to a New Philosophy by G. Boniolo

By G. Boniolo

Medical innovations, legislation, theories, types and proposal experiments are representations yet uniquely diverse. In On clinical illustration each one is given a whole philosophical exploration inside of an unique, coherent philosophical framework that's strongly rooted within the Kantian culture (Kant, Hertz, Vaihinger, Cassirer). via a revisionist old process, Boniolo indicates how the Kantian culture can assist us renew and reconsider modern matters in epistemology and the philosophy of technological know-how.

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On Scientific Representation: From Kant to a New Philosophy of Science

Clinical thoughts, legislation, theories, types and idea experiments are representations yet uniquely varied. In On clinical illustration each one is given an entire philosophical exploration inside of an unique, coherent philosophical framework that's strongly rooted within the Kantian culture (Kant, Hertz, Vaihinger, Cassirer).

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Nevertheless, substance is the category without which the other categories would not have any value: we cannot speak of quantity, quality, time, position, action and so on, without something which can have such determination, that is, without substance. Note that the accidental categories, being schemata of empirical accidents, are not accidents in the usual sense. For if being ‘white’, or ‘good’ can pertain to man accidentally, since a particular man can be white, or good; it is not at all accidental that a man has the possibility of having a quality such as ‘whiteness’, or ‘goodness’.

What it gives is a universal rule for the connection of the particulars themselves. Thus we can proceed from a general mathematical formula, – for example, from the formula of a curve of the second order, – to the special geometric forms of the circle, the ellipse, and so on, by considering a certain parameter which occurs in them and permitting it to vary through a continuous series of magnitudes. (Cassirer, 1910, pp. , p. 14), due to a creative (productive) act of the knowing subject. The concept reached thus is not only more universal than the concepts which can be derived from it, but it has also a larger comprehension.

However, Cassirer goes further than Kant, and tries to mix the Kantian idea of function with the idea of function that was being developed in works on the foundations of mathematics in those years – in Russell’s Principles of Mathematics of 1903, in Russell’s and Whitehead’s Principia Mathematica of 1910, and in the earlier essays by Frege, The Foundations of Arithmetic (1884), and ‘A Critical Elucidation of some Points in Schröder’s Vorlesungen über die Algebra der Logik’ (1895). There are, he [Russell in Principles of Mathematics] stresses, two ways to determine classes: one by pointing out their members one by one and connecting them as a mere aggregate, by a simple ‘and’ – the other by stating a universal characteristic, a condition which all members of the class must fulfill.

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