[hist-analytic] Another Bete Noire: Mechanism

Jlsperanza at aol.com Jlsperanza at aol.com
Sat Feb 6 23:45:28 EST 2010

>From the OED: 

1867 Michigan Univ. Mag 1 86 

Neither mechanicism  which places the cause of all disease in the primary  
disturbance of  mechanical conditions and forces, or chemicism, which places 
such   disturbance in the chemical relation of particles..can contain the  
exclusive  truth. 

--- Come on, we are not judges, 'the truth and  nothing but the  truth'?

1882 Mind 7 248 

Teleology  was, in some respects, a falling-off from the rigid mechanicism  
first  taught by the prae-Socratic schools. 

--- so now you see why  Sedley needs the defending!

1908 Internat. Jrnl. Ethics 18 519  

The doctrine became, under the form of hylozoism, pure materialism  and  

I loved that! Note it's hylozoism, not  the common-or-garden Platonising,  

1962  W. STARK Fund. Forms of Social Thought II. xii. 176 

A fresh high-water  mark of mechanicism was reached in the eighth decade of 
 the nineteenth  century. 

---- a breath of fresh air? 

1971  Archivum Linguisticum 2 115 

But if to avoid the limitations of  Kuryowicz's method, we have to admit  
that a form passes arbitrarily from  one function to another, not taking into 
 account the facts of  polarization, attraction, etc., then we fall into  

--- Strictly, we fall into Kuryowiczian mechanicism, from which it's  
pretty  easy to recover (unlike Humpty Dumpty's  wall). 

1990 Jrnl. Hist. Ideas 51 610  

Goethe's..reaction against mathematicism and  mechanicism.

Etc. The puzzle for Grice then would be: how can  'teleology' fit with 
'mechanism' and should it?
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