Philosophical Realism

“The fact that the moon exists and is spherical is independent of anything anyone happens to say or think about the matter.”

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“There are two general aspects to realism, illustrated by looking at realism about the everyday world of macroscopic objects and their properties. First, there is a claim about existence. Tables, rocks, the moon, and so on, all exist, as do the following facts: the table’s being square, the rock’s being made of granite, and the moon’s being spherical and yellow. The second aspect of realism about the everyday world of macroscopic objects and their properties concerns independence. The fact that the moon exists and is spherical is independent of anything anyone happens to say or think about the matter. Likewise, although there is a clear sense in which the table’s being square is dependent on us (it was designed and constructed by human beings after all), this is not the type of dependence that the realist wishes to deny. The realist wishes to claim that apart from the mundane sort of empirical dependence of objects and their properties familiar to us from everyday life, there is no further (philosophically interesting) sense in which everyday objects and their properties can be said to be dependent on anyone’s linguistic practices, conceptual schemes, or whatever.”

Miller, Alexander, “Realism”, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (Winter 2016 Edition), Edward N. Zalta¬†(ed.), URL = <https://plato.stanford.edu/archives/win2016/entries/realism/&gt;.

Author: Christina Cooper

Gender non-conforming. Deal with it.

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