[hist-analytic] Whither Analytic Philosophy?

Roger Bishop Jones rbj at rbjones.com
Tue Feb 2 11:22:52 EST 2010

On Tuesday 02 Feb 2010 09:06, Jlsperanza at aol.com wrote:
> Lovely comments, R. B.!

You're too kind JL, if that's possible.
I try to keep an even temper, and I don't think I am too bad at that,
but I can't match your positive character, problems get in my way and I am 
compelled to cut them down.

> Forays, _that_ gave me the wrong clue! How was I to know you meant
> 'prescription'. Who am _I_ to prescribe?

Or I.
No, I'm not keen on prescription, its a bit futile.
I prefer (but don't prescribe) something in between preferences and 
prescriptions, which is (believe it or not) analysis.

Start with a mixture of analysis and instinctive preferences and analyse them 
to death, or at least a little way in the hope of supporting choice between 
the alternatives (where choice is necessary).
This is part of my new methodological pluralism with which I supplement 
Carnap's principle of tolerance (generally treated with so little tolerance).

It may be too much to hope that you will engage in thoroughgoing chrystal-
ball-gazing JL, but I tried an idea last year which I am tempted to revive.


I said:

> I am trying an exposition, for a hypothetical
> audience consisting of Carnap, of why a positivist
> should take metaphysics a bit more seriously and
> what point there might be in looking at Aristotle's
> metaphysics.

Considering Grice and Carnap both to lie near the liberal end of some spectrum 
of which the opposite is dogmatism, I did think it would be interesting to 
consider how Grice and Carnap might be reconciled, and imagined metaphysical 
positivism a means for such a reconciliation.

This little project soon got snowed under, but I wonder if I might interest 
Speranza, (or anyone else) in a slight variation on that idea.
Let us imagine that Grice and Carnap lived on and are now embodied as JLS and 
RBJ, with the kind of philosophical views which one might speculate that they 
would have had after living through the second half of the twentieth century,
JLS representing Grice and myself Carnap (I do believe that my own views are 
conceivably what Carnap might have come to).

The burning question would then  be (for me), what then would be the sticking 
points on which they could not agree?

Though I soon forgot about my first idea last year, I did actually write 
something, which is in:
http://www.rbjones.com/rbjpub/www/papers/p008.pdf where there is a section on 
Carnap and Grice (the date on the front is incorrect, I haven't touched it 
since 2 June).




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