Read e-book online Berkeley: An Interpretation PDF

By Kenneth P. Winkler

ISBN-10: 0198249071

ISBN-13: 9780198249078

George Berkeley (1685-1753) held that subject doesn't exist, and that the sensations we take to be because of an detached and self sufficient international are as a substitute prompted without delay by means of God. Nature has no life except the spirits who transmit and obtain it. during this e-book, Winkler provides those conclusions as common (though in no way inevitable) results of Berkeley's reflections on such subject matters as illustration, abstraction, precious fact, and reason and impact. He bargains new interpretations of Berkeley's perspectives on unperceived gadgets, corpuscularian technology, and our wisdom of God and different minds.

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And his opposition to the belief runs so deep that even the words that do signify ideas are not connected to things in the way the Lockean picture indicates. The Lockean picture suggests that a word stands for a thing only because it first stands for an idea that intervenes between them. But such a view, translated into Berkeley's scheme of things, would have the odd consequence that a word stands for a thing (that is, an idea of sense) only because it^m^ stands for the idea of that thing (that is, for the idea of imagination which copies the thing and therefore represents it).

If ideas alone are to account for the intentionality or 'aboutness' of language, as Berkeley takes Locke to suppose, then a word's signification must be fully determined by the associated idea. If we abandon this requirement, allowing one and the same idea to represent a particular man on some occasions and man in general on others, we introduce a looseness of fit between ideas and the world. But it was the promise of a tight fit that made ideas plausible candidates for explaining the aboutness of language in the first place.

Among its other ends are the raising of passion, the prompting of action, and the inculcation of dispositions. All these, he argues, can often be accomplished without the communicating of ideas. ' And 'when a Schoolman tells me Aristotle hath said it, all I conceive he means by it, is to dispose me to embrace his opinion with the deference and submission which custom has annexed to that name. ' (Introduction 20. See also Alciphron vii S-) Third, the names of spirits and their acts and operations, Berkeley mistaken belief in abstract ideas.

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Berkeley: An Interpretation by Kenneth P. Winkler


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