Epistemology

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By Omar W. Nasim

The writer demonstrates the numerous position that the various Edwardian philosophers performed within the formation of Russell's paintings at the challenge of the exterior global performed on the tail-end of an argument which raged among approximately 1900-1915.

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Extra info for Bertrand Russell and the Edwardian Philosophers: Constructing the World

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Here is how Cook Wilson draws out this ‘objective fact’. 1). Even though the lines AB and CD are reallyy equal to one another, they may appearr to vary in size from E. Depending on where E is in the same plane, either AB will look smaller than CD, or CD will look smaller than AB, or AB will appear to be equal to CD. Cook Wilson only considers the case in which AB looks smaller than CD. In this case, Cook Wilson says, points A and B are seen ‘behind’73 points a and b (these are where the rays of A and B intersect CD on their way to E) on CD, so that as a result the line AB ‘looks’ smaller than CD from E.

These mental sense-presentations are thus ‘correlated’ to the non-mental qualities that inhere in a thing, but are not identical with them. Or as he puts it, ‘Our general result up to this point is that there is no essential difference between the primary and secondary attributes of matter so far as regards their connexion with sense-experience. Both are Stout’s Proto-New-Realism 23 in one way independent of sense and in another dependent on it’ (Stout 1904, 153). 41 What in his paper is called a ‘representative function’ is fundamental to Stout’s position.

Part of the importance of this argument rests in the fact that it is one of the main reasons why Stout introduces mental presentations. In many ways arguments like this are used by Stout to demonstrate the essential inclusion of mental presentations into any theory of perception. 71 Cook Wilson thinks such arguments for the introduction of mental presentations into our knowledge of the external world rest on an important presupposition that Stout overlooks. This presupposition is supposed to show the superfluous nature of positing apparent extension, or more generally, any mental sensible-presentation.

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