By Oswald Hanfling

What's philosophy approximately and what are its tools? Philosophy and traditional Language is a defence of the view that philosophy is essentially approximately questions of language, which to a wide volume capacity ordinary language. a few humans argue that if philosophy is ready traditional language, then it's unavoidably much less deep and hard than it is often taken to be yet Oswald Hanfling indicates us that this is not actual. Hanfling, a number one professional within the improvement of analytic philosophy, covers a variety of issues, together with scepticism and the definition of information, loose will, empiricism, people psychology, traditional as opposed to synthetic good judgment, and philosophy as opposed to technological know-how. Drawing on philosophers resembling Austin, Wittgenstein, and Quine, this publication explores the character of standard language in philosophy.

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Additional info for Philosophy and Ordinary Language: The Bent and Genius of our Tongue

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In another passage Austin wrote that ‘when 4 5 Austin’s position reminds one of Berkeley’s advice (discussed in Ch. 8) that ‘we need only draw the curtain of words, to behold the fairest tree of knowledge’ (G. Berkeley, Principles of Human Knowledge (Dent 1993); hereafter ‘PHK’; Introduction §24). L. Austin, Sense and Sensibilia (SS) (OUP 1962), 63. 30 The philosophy of ‘what we say’: its practice and justification we have discovered how a word is in fact used, that may not be the end of the matter.

8 (SS 21; the passages in quotation marks are from Ayer’s book) The term ‘sense-data’ was then (as reported by Austin) extended by Ayer to cover the perception of real objects as well as mirages, ‘on the old familiar ground that delusive and veridical perceptions’ do not differ in quality. J. Ayer, The Foundations of Empirical Knowledge (Macmillan 1940). 34 The philosophy of ‘what we say’: its practice and justification according to Ayer, this extension could be justified, not as representing a ‘factual discovery’, but as ‘a new verbal usage’ (SS 87).

If this means that a person’s moral behaviour cannot be affected by such an enquiry, then it is not. Polemarchus may have thought that in repaying harm with harm, one would have justice on one’s side; but a ‘conceptual enquiry’ may get him to see that this is not so, and this may well affect his behaviour. A commentator who is more sympathetic to a ‘linguistic’ understanding of these discussions is Gregory Vlastos, who describes Socrates’ enquiry as ‘a search for the meanings’ of the relevant words.

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