Willard Van Orman Quine Quotes

Willard Van Orman Quine Quotes: Different persons growing up in the same language are like different bushes trimmed and trained to take the shape of identical elephants. The anatomical details of twigs and branches will fulfill the elephantine form differently from bush to bush, but the overall outward results are alike.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Quote: If pressed to supplement Tweedledee's ostensive definition of logic with a discursive definition of the same subject, I would say that logic is the systematic study of the logical truths. Pressed further, I would say that a sentence is logically true if all sentences with its grammatical structure are true. Pressed further still, I would say to read this book.
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Quotes about Willard Van Orman Quine: How are we to adjudicate among rival ontologies? Certainly the answer is not provided by the semantical formula
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Quote about Willard Van Orman Quine: Linguistically, and hence conceptually, the things in sharpest focus are the things that are public enough to be talked of publicly, common and conspicuous enough to be talked of often, and near enough to sense to be quickly identified and learned by name; it is to these that words apply first and foremost.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Sayings: Language is a social art.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Saying: To call a posit a posit is not to patronize it. A posit can be unavoidable except at the cost of other no less artificial expedients. Everything to which we concede existence is a posit from the standpoint of a description of the theory-building process, and simultaneously real from the standpoint of the theory that is being built.
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Sayings about Willard Van Orman Quine: The familiar material objects may not be all that is real, but they are admirable examples.
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Saying about Willard Van Orman Quine: We cannot stem linguistic change, but we can drag our feet. If each of us were to defy Alexander Pope and be the last to lay the old aside, it might not be a better world, but it would be a lovelier language.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Quotes: Some have said that the thesis [of indeterminacy] is a consequence of my behaviorism. Some have said that it is a reductio ad absurdum of my behaviorism. I disagree with this second point, but I agree with the first. I hold further that the behaviorism approach is mandatory. In psychology one may or may not be a behaviorist, but in linguistics one has no choice.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Quote: Unlike Descartes, we own and use our beliefs of the moment, even in the midst of philosophizing, until by what is vaguely called scientific method we change them here and there for the better. Within our own total evolving doctrine, we can judge truth as earnestly and absolutely as can be, subject to correction, but that goes without saying.
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Quotes about Willard Van Orman Quine: One man's antinomy is another man's falsidical paradox, give or take a couple of thousand years.
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Quote about Willard Van Orman Quine: Logic is an old subject, and since 1879 it has been a great one.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Sayings: A curious thing about the ontological problem is its simplicity. It can be put into three Anglo-Saxon monosyllables: 'What is there?' It can be answered, moreover, in a word--'Everything'--and everyone will accept this answer as true.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Saying: The strategy of semantic ascent is that it carries the discussion into a domain where both parties are better agreed on the objects (viz., words) and on the main terms connecting them. Words, or their inscriptions, unlike points, miles, classes and the rest, are tangible objects of the size so popular in the marketplace, where men of unlike conceptual schemes communicate at their best. The strategy is one of ascending to a common part of two fundamentally disparate conceptual schemes, the better to discuss the disparate foundations. No wonder it helps in philosophy.
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Sayings about Willard Van Orman Quine: Treating 'water' as a name of a single scattered object is not intended to enable us to dispense with general terms and plurality of reference. Scatter is in fact an inconsequential detail.
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Saying about Willard Van Orman Quine: An indirect quotation we can usually expect to rate only as better or worse, more or less faithful, and we cannot even hope for astrict standard of more and less; what is involved is evaluation, relative to special purposes, of an essentially dramatic act.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Quotes: The mastery of one's phonemes may be compared to the violinist's mastery of fingering. The violin string lends itself to a continuous gradation of tones, but the musician learns the discrete intervals at which to stop the string in order to play the conventional notes. We sound our phonemes like poor violinists, approximating each time to a fancied norm, and we receive our neighbor's renderings indulgently, mentally rectifying the more glaring inaccuracies.
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Willard Van Orman Quine Quote: English general and singular terms, identity, quantification, and the whole bag of ontological tricks may be correlated with elements of the native language in any of various mutually incompatible ways, each compatible with all possible linguistic data, and none preferable to another save as favored by a rationalization of the native language that is simple and natural to us.
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