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Scholastic Realism: A Key to Understanding Peirce’s Philosophy

by Paniel Reyes Cárdenas (Author)
Monographs X, 238 Pages

Table Of Content

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author(s)/editor(s)
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Contents
  • Foreword
  • Abbreviations
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: Why Should We Concern Ourselves with the Problem of Universals?
  • Scientific Realism
  • Plato and Aristotle
  • Medieval Solutions
  • Scotus on Universals
  • Why Should ‘Haecceity’ Be Accepted as a Principle of Individuation?
  • Scotus’s Solution to the Problem of Universals
  • Nominalism of Universals
  • Why Was Peirce Interested in the Problem of Universals?
  • Peirce and Scotus
  • Peirce’s Interest in Universals: Scholastic Realism
  • Chapter 2: Peirce’s Early Scholastic Realism and its Development
  • The Critique of Intuitions in the Journal of Speculative Philosophy Series
  • The Berkeley Review and the Scotistic Definition of Reality
  • A Nominalist Conception of Reality
  • Two forms of nominalism in the nominalist account of reality
  • A Scholastic Realist Conception of Reality
  • The Origins of Peirce’s Scholastic Realism
  • Some Unresolved Complications
  • Chapter 3: A Pragmatic Account of Reality: Peirce’s Ideas about Universals in the 1870s Illustrations on the Logic of Science Series of Papers
  • Belief and truth
  • Other methods of inquiry and the method of science
  • Inquiry and reality
  • The pragmatic maxim
  • Degrees of clarity and Generals
  • Reality as a hypothesis
  • Some Conclusions and Complications: The Necessity of Improving Realism
  • Chapter 4: The Development of Peirce’s Realism: Categories and Evolutionary Cosmology from the 1880s to the 1890s
  • Peirce’s Logical Conception of Reality and the Need for Scholastic Realism about Categories
  • What is a Category?
  • The Development of Category Realism
  • The Derivation of Categories in Phenomenology
  • The Derivation of Categories in the Logic of Relatives: ‘The Remarkable Theorem’
  • Realist/Scholastic Derivation of Categories in the Monist Papers
  • The Pervasiveness of Categories
  • Realism of Firstness
  • Realism of Secondness
  • Realism of Thirdness
  • Interpretations of Category Realism
  • Peirce’s Realism of Categories and Scotus’s Realism
  • Chapter 5: The Metaphysics of Continuity: Peirce’s Scholastic Realism Understood as Synechism
  • Can a Fallibilist Be a Metaphysician?
  • Questioning the Axioms of Modern Ontological Metaphysics
  • The Origins of the Doctrine of Synechism
  • Continuity and Collections: Mathematical Aspects of the Continuum
  • Pre-Cantorian period (until 1884)
  • Cantor’s continuum and Peirce’s continuum: Cantorian period (1884–1894)
  • The Kantistic period (1895–1908)
  • Post-Cantorian period (1908–1911)
  • Continuity and the Hypothesis of Reality
  • Synechism and Evolutionary Cosmology
  • Consequences of Scholastic Realism Understood as Synechism
  • Anti-dualism
  • Generals and vagueness
  • Chapter 6: Scholastic Realism, Modes of Being, and the Architectonic System
  • Scientific Metaphysics
  • Truth and Reality
  • The Nominalist Conception of Reality Superseded
  • Inquiry and Explanations: Scholastic Realism Understood as a Theory of Modes of Being
  • What are modes of being?
  • Modes of being in the context of universes of discourse
  • Modes of being: The logical conception of reality and truth as a mode of being
  • Modes of being: Vagueness
  • Modes of being: True continua
  • Modes of being: The universes of experience and the system of Categories as products of inquiry
  • Modes of being: Perception
  • Reality and Pragmaticism
  • Scholastic Realism and the Architectonic System
  • Conclusions
  • Scholastic Realism: A Pragmatist Solution to the Problem of Universals
  • The Argument for Scholastic Realism
  • The Aspects of Scholastic Realism in a Comprehensive Doctrine
  • A Response to the Problem of Lost Facts
  • The Rejection of Nominalism about Universals
  • The Consequences for Peirce’s Scientific Realism
  • The Consequences for the Theory of Inquiry
  • Bibliography
  • Index

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Foreword

The aim of this book is to demonstrate how Charles Sanders Peirce found unity for his pragmatist philosophy by formulating his Scholastic Realism. I propose this doctrine as a reading guide for, and the leading principle of, his different stages as a philosopher. I want to understand why Peirce’s Realist doctrine was for him a feasible and consistent account of the problem of Universals. I provide an answer to the question of why the problem of Universals, in Peirce’s mind, pervades the history of philosophy. I also analyse the derived question: why does Peirce require us to conceive of philosophy as a struggle between nominalism and realism? I follow the thread of argumentation that leads to the recognition that Peirce’s Scholastic Realism is of particular and fundamental importance to the understanding of his philosophy and the problems involved in his continued inquiry. More importantly, I argue that my interpretation is a novel, feasible and plausible account of reality. Peirce’s scholarship has not considered this insightful interpretation for reasons that are not necessarily philosophical. I argue that we might get good use out of it if we ask the right questions about reality, as Peirce did. I show that Peirce’s realism responds to different, related philosophical problems that led up to the final version of ‘Scientific Metaphysics’. The conclusion offers an interpretation of ‘Scholastic Realism’ as a solution for Peirce’s concerns, a useful idea in order to achieve a better account of reality in Peirce’s striving for a posteriori metaphysics. Peirce’s doctrine is suggested with some of its applications, especially in the field of theories about abstraction and the foundations of mathematics, as Peirce would want it to be. I believe that the text, therefore, will lead to greater comprehension of the problems involved in Peirce’s philosophy, in pragmatism and its origins, and in the history of philosophy conceived as the struggle between realism and nominalism.

I owe thanks to many people, especially those people who were especially kind and helpful throughout the years of my PhD studies, during which the research that gave rise to this book was carried out. I am grateful ← vii | viii → to all who, in one way or another, were part of this life-changing experience. I want to acknowledge the support of the National Council of Sciences and Technology of Mexico (CONACyT), which funded my research for the four years of my MPhil and PhD. I had a precious opportunity to improve the manuscript of the book during a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Nottingham, where I was kindly received by Jonathan Tallant and Jules Holroyd. In Mexico, I had the unconditional support of my esteemed colleagues Jorge Medina, Eugenio Urrutia, Roberto Casales and Martín Castro Manzano, who have facilitated my transition from nerdy student to philosophy lecturer.

I would like to kindly acknowledge my fellow pragmatist philosophers and guides. First of all, I will never be able to thank Christopher Hookway enough for his guidance, example, philosophical genius, model and prompt advice. I am also thankful to Stephen Makin, who was always a helpful and guiding presence. I am grateful, too, to all my dear friends and colleagues who, one way or another, contributed to the Pragmatist Reading Group: Cathy Legg, Shannon Dea, Graeme Forbes, Tom O’Shea, Dan Herbert, Andrew Howat, Rosa Mayorga, Joshua Black, Joshua Forstenzer, Roberto Gronda, Neil Williams, Maiya Jordan, Elena Pagni and Douglas Hare. I want to express, finally, my gratitude to Lucy Melville and Alice Emmott from Peter Lang Ltd, International Academic Publishers, who were extremely helpful throughout the production of this book: their patience and help has been truly inspiring. I also appreciate the help of Jose Luis de la Torre Nemenz and Juan José Sánchez, who were involved in the revision of the final manuscript of this book.

Paniel Osberto Reyes Cárdenas, PhD
Assistant Professor of Philosophy
UPAEP, Puebla, Mexico

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Abbreviations

Works by Duns Scotus

References to Collationes oxonienses et parisienses are Coll., followed by references using standard internal divisions, using ‘prol.’ for Prologue, ‘d.’ for distinction, ‘q.’ for question, and ‘n.’ for paragraph number.

References to Quaestiones super libros Metaphysicourm Aristotelis are In Metaph. followed by references using standard internal divisions, using ‘prol.’ for Prologue, ‘d.’ for distinction, ‘q.’ for question, and ‘n.’ for paragraph number.

References to Lectura are Lect., followed by references using standard internal divisions, using ‘prol.’ for Prologue, ‘d.’ for distinction, ‘q.’ for question, and ‘n.’ for paragraph number.

References to Ordinatio (=Opus Oxoniense) are Ord., followed references using standard internal divisions, using ‘prol.’ for Prologue, ‘d.’ for distinction, ‘q.’ for question, and ‘n.’ for paragraph number.

References to Reportatio parisiensis are Rep., followed by references using standard internal divisions, using ‘prol.’ for Prologue, ‘d.’ for distinction, ‘q.’ for question, and ‘n.’ for paragraph number.

References to Questiones Quodlibetales are Quodl., followed by references using standard internal divisions, using ‘prol.’ for Prologue, ‘d.’ for distinction, ‘q.’ for question, and ‘n.’ for paragraph number.

References to Theoremata are Theor., followed by references using standard internal divisions, using ‘prol.’ for Prologue, ‘d.’ for distinction, ‘q.’ for question, and ‘n.’ for paragraph number.

Works by Aristotle

References to Categories are Cat., followed by the number of the Critical Edition paragraph.

References to Metaphysics are Met., followed by the number of the Critical Edition paragraph.

References to Physics are Phys., followed by the number of the Critical Edition paragraph.

References to Summa Theologieae of Thomas Aquinas are given as ST, followed by the part, question, and article, e.g. ‘IaIIae’ = first part of the second part. ← ix | x →

Works by Immanuel Kant

References to the Critique of Pure Reason are CPR followed by the letter A or B depending on the edition and the number of the critical edition, e.g. ‘(CPR A79/B104)’.

Works by Charles Sanders Peirce

References to Writings of Charles S. Peirce: A Chronological Edition (Peirce 1982–94) cite the volume number, the page and the year the passage was written, e.g. ‘(W2: 466, 1871)’.

References to Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce (Peirce 1935–58) cite the volume and paragraph number and the year the passage was written, when available, e.g. ‘(CP 5.143, 1903)’.

References to The New Elements of Mathematics by Charles S. Peirce (Peirce 1976) include the NEM volume number, the page number, the year the passage was written, e.g. ‘(NEM 3: 903, 1904)’.

References to The Essential Peirce: Selected Philosophical Writings (Peirce 1992, 1998) include the EP volume number, the page number, the year the passage was written, e.g. ‘(EP 2: 11, 1885)’.

References to Pragmatism as a Principle and Method of Right Thinking: The 1903 Harvard Lectures on Pragmatism (Peirce 1997) include the page number, the year the passage was written, e.g. ‘(P: 123, 1903)’.

References to Reasoning and the Logic of Things: The Cambridge Conference Lectures of 1898 (Peirce 1992) include the page number, the year the passage was written, e.g. ‘(RLT: 93, 1898)’.

Undated manuscripts are marked ‘MS’ with the number on the Annotated Catalogue of the Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce (Robin 1967), for example, MS 47.

Works by Thomas Aquinas

References to Summa Theologieae are given as ST, followed by the part, question and article, e.g. ‘IaIIae’ = first part of the second part of the Summa.

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Introduction

Summary

The aim of this work is to respond to the following question: how did Charles S. Peirce find unity for his pragmatist philosophy through the formulation of Scholastic Realism? The author proposes the said doctrine to be a reading guide, leading us through the different stages of Peirce’s work as a philosopher. By understanding his realist doctrine, we can see why he believed it was a viable theory for understanding the problem of Universals. This book demonstrates why, in Peirce’s mind, such a problem has pervaded the history of philosophy. The author’s line of argument reveals that Scholastic Realism is crucial to the understanding of his philosophy, which is a new approach in Peirce scholarship. It provides a useful framework for asking questions about reality in the same way that Peirce himself did. As a result, the author shows that Peirce’s realism addresses different yet related philosophical problems, leading Peirce to brand the final version of his philosophy as «Scientific Metaphysics». The conclusion offers an interpretation of the Scholastic Realism principle as a solution to Peirce’s concerns – a useful idea to achieve a better theory of reality in his struggle to realize metaphysics a posteriori. Peirce’s doctrine is presented alongside some of its uses, especially in the fields of abstraction theory, and also in the fundamental principles of mathematics. This work should advance our comprehension of the problems related to Peirce’s philosophy as well as shedding light on pragmatism and its origins as well as the battle between realism and nominalism.

Details

Pages
X, 238
ISBN (PDF)
9781787075474
ISBN (ePUB)
9781787075481
ISBN (MOBI)
9781787075498
ISBN (Book)
9781787075467
Language
English
Publication date
2018 (January)
Tags
Charles S. Peirce Scientific Realism Universals Pragmatism Scholastic Realism
Published
Oxford, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, New York, Wien, 2018. X, 238 pp., 2 fig.

Biographical notes

Paniel Reyes Cárdenas (Author)

Paniel Reyes Cárdenas is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at UPAEP (People’s Autonomous University of Puebla State, Mexico), after a spell as postdoctoral research fellow at the University of Nottingham, UK. He obtained his PhD at the University of Sheffield working on Peirce’s pragmatism and the metaphysics of Scholastic Realism and the philosophy of mathematics derived from it. His interests include the philosophy of mathematics, metaphysics, philosophy of time, modality, philosophy of language, care ethics and virtue epistemology. His work finds unity in the pragmatist tradition initiated by the American polymath Charles S. Peirce. The author is also interested in philosophy of religion and particularly in Kierkegaard’s works. In addition, he founded the Mexican Society for Metaphysics and the Philosophy of Science

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Title: Scholastic Realism: A Key to Understanding Peirce’s Philosophy