Philosophy without Intuitions

Paperback | March 4, 2014

byHerman Cappelen

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The claim that contemporary analytic philosophers rely extensively on intuitions as evidence is almost universally accepted in current meta-philosophical debates and it figures prominently in our self-understanding as analytic philosophers. No matter what area you happen to work in and whatviews you happen to hold in those areas, you are likely to think that philosophizing requires constructing cases and making intuitive judgments about those cases. This assumption also underlines the entire experimental philosophy movement: only if philosophers rely on intuitions as evidence are dataabout non-philosophers' intuitions of any interest to us. Our alleged reliance on the intuitive makes many philosophers who don't work on meta-philosophy concerned about their own discipline: they are unsure what intuitions are and whether they can carry the evidential weight we allegedly assign tothem. The goal of this book is to argue that this concern is unwarranted since the claim is false: it is not true that philosophers rely extensively (or even a little bit) on intuitions as evidence. At worst, analytic philosophers are guilty of engaging in somewhat irresponsible use of"intuition"-vocabulary. While this irresponsibility has had little effect on first order philosophy, it has fundamentally misled meta-philosophers: it has encouraged meta-philosophical pseudo-problems and misleading pictures of what philosophy is.

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The claim that contemporary analytic philosophers rely extensively on intuitions as evidence is almost universally accepted in current meta-philosophical debates and it figures prominently in our self-understanding as analytic philosophers. No matter what area you happen to work in and whatviews you happen to hold in those areas, you a...

Herman Cappelen is a professor of philosophy at the University of St Andrews, where he works at the Arche Philosophical Research Centre. He works in philosophy of language, philosophical methodology and related areas of epistemology, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind. He is the author of many papers and three books: Insensitive Sema...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:256 pages, 8.5 × 5.51 × 0.68 inPublished:March 4, 2014Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198703023

ISBN - 13:9780198703020

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Table of Contents

Preface and Acknowledgements1. Intuitions in Philosophy: Overview and TaxonomyPart I: The Argument from 'Intuition'-TalkIntroduction to Part I2. 'Intuitive', 'Intuitively', 'Intuition', and 'Seem' in English3. Philosophers' Use of 'Intuitive' (I): A Defective Practice and the Verbal Virus Theory4. Philosophers' Use of 'Intuitive' (II): Some Strategies for Charitable InterpretationAppendix to Chapter 4. Williamson on Intuition as Belief and Inclination to Believe5. Philosophers' Use of 'Intuitive' (III): Against the Explaining Away of IntuitionsPart II: The Argument from Philosophical PracticeIntroduction to Part II6. Centrality and Philosophical Practice7. Diagnostics for Intuitiveness8. Case Studies9. Lessons Learned, Replies to Objections, and Comparison to Williamson10. Conceptual Analysis and Intuitions11. A Big Mistake: Experimental PhilosophyBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

"an excellent contribution to the ongoing debate" --Stephen Ingram, Metaphilosophy