The Naturalistic Turn — I

Footnotes to Plato

naked Newton[for a brief explanation of this ongoing series, as well as a full table of contents, go here]

“To be is to be the value of a variable.”

(Willard Van Orman Quine)

We have seen so far that philosophy broadly construed has a significant public relation problem, and I’ve argued that one of the root causes of this problem is its sometimes antagonistic relationship with science, mostly, but not only, fueled by some high prominent scientists who locked horns with equally prominent anti-scientistic philosophers. In this chapter we will examine the other side of the same coin: the embracing by a number of philosophers of a more positive relationship with science, to the point of either grounding philosophical work exclusively in a science-based naturalistic view of the world, or even of attempting to erase any significant differences between philosophy and science. This complex discourse is sometimes referred to as…

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