Second Philosophy: A Naturalistic Method

Paperback | January 5, 2009

byPenelope Maddy

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Many philosophers these days consider themselves naturalists, but it's doubtful any two of them intend the same position by the term. In this book, Penelope Maddy describes and practises a particularly austere form of naturalism called 'Second Philosophy'. Without a definitive criterion forwhat counts as 'science' and what doesn't, Second Philosophy can't be specified directly - 'trust only the methods of science!' or some such thing - so Maddy proceeds instead by illustrating the behaviours of an idealized inquirer she calls the 'Second Philosopher'. This Second Philosopher beginsfrom perceptual common sense and progresses from there to systematic observation, active experimentation, theory formation and testing, working all the while to assess, correct and improve her methods as she goes. Second Philosophy is then the result of the Second Philosopher's investigations. Maddy delineates the Second Philosopher's approach by tracing her reactions to various familiar skeptical and transcendental views (Descartes, Kant, Carnap, late Putnam, van Fraassen), comparing her methods to those of other self-described naturalists (especially Quine), and examining a prominentcontemporary debate (between disquotationalists and correspondence theorists in the theory of truth) to extract a properly second-philosophical line of thought. She then undertakes to practise Second Philosophy in her reflections on the ground of logical truth, the methodology, ontology andepistemology of mathematics, and the general prospects for metaphysics naturalized.

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Many philosophers these days consider themselves naturalists, but it's doubtful any two of them intend the same position by the term. In this book, Penelope Maddy describes and practises a particularly austere form of naturalism called 'Second Philosophy'. Without a definitive criterion forwhat counts as 'science' and what doesn't, Sec...

Penelope Maddy is UCI Distinguished Professor of Logic and Philosophy of Science and of Mathematics at the University of California at Irvine.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:460 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.01 inPublished:January 5, 2009Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199566240

ISBN - 13:9780199566242

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Table of Contents

PrefaceIntroductionPart I: What is Second Philosophy?1. Descartes' first philosophy2. Neo-Cartesian skepticism3. Hume's naturalism4. Kant's transcendentalism5. Carnap's rational reconstruction6. Quine's naturalism7. Putnam's anti-naturalismPart II: The Second Philosopher at Work8. What's left to do?9. An illustration: truth and reference10. Reconfiguring the debate11. Disquotation12. Minimalism13. CorrelationPart III: A Second Philosophy of Logic14. Naturalistic options15. Kant on logic16. Undoing the Copernican revolution17. The logical structure of the world18. The logical structure of cognition19. The status of rudimentary logic20. From rudimentary to classical logic21. CaveatsPart IV: Second Philosophy and Mathematics22. Second philosophy of science23. Mathematics in application24. Second methodology of mathematics25. Second philosophy of mathematics26. Second metaphysicsBibliography

Editorial Reviews

`Review from previous edition The book is excellent: the thesis is refreshing, the presentation clear and forthright, the argumentation careful, the research thorough and informed. It contains a wealth of material that should appeal to far more readers than those of us who are alreadysusceptible to second philosophy. It presents the best exploration and defence of naturalism I know of.'Michael Liston, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews