Introduction to the Study of the History of Epistemology
Writing about the history of epistemology is somewhat strange and, in a certain way, an unappreciated enterprise. It is difficult in much the same way as writing about the history of thinking and particularly of philosophy itself. There are several aspects to it.
The first aspect is the methodology of the history of philosophy and particularly the history of epistemology.
1/ It seems that one of the most natural approaches to depicting the history of philosophical (epistemological) thinking, is to present a chronological account of the philosophical opinions about the problem of knowledge in the way that these opinions were recorded in the texts of the individual thinkers. Similar to any other histories, this task could be approached by providing a virtual chronological account of the thinking, and highlighting the most important milestones in the development and ← 7 | 8 → formation of individual schools of thought according to their historical relevance. However, problems would arise right from the beginning of such an approach.
1.1/ The first serious problem of the history of philosophy is the fact that it is not clear when and where philosophy as a discipline evolved, or when it actually began. If we look in textbooks, we discover that the authors of various histories have often stated different dates and places (Greek islands vs. ancient China, India, Mesopotamia, or even the territory of ancient Egypt), especially when stating different influences and reasons for the origin of a philosophy and its...
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