Philosophy Lexicon of Arguments

Atomism (philosophy, logic): the assumption that the facts can be represented by elementary sentences. Thus the question of the independence of facts is raised.
Author Item Excerpt Meta data
Sellars, Wilfrid
Books on Amazon
Atomism I 33
Standard Conditions: assuming them leads out of the logical atomism. (>circumstances) - It is not enough that the conditions are appropriate, the subject must know that they are.
Circumstances: to determine them it is necessary to know something about the objects: how they are under different circumstances.
I 34
Logical atomism: VsSellars: it could reply that Sellars
1) overlooks the fact that the logical space of physical objects in space and time is based on the logical space of sense content.
2) the concepts of the sense contents have the kind of logical independence from one another which is characteristic of traditional empiricism.
3) concepts for theoretical entities such as molecules have the kind of interdependence which Sellars may have rightly attributed to the concepts of physical facts, but: the theoretical concepts have empirical content precisely because they are based on a more fundamental logical space.
Sellars would have to show that this space is also loaded with coherence, but he cannot do that until he has abolished the idea of ​​a more fundamental logical space than that of the physical objects in space and time.
Logical atomism: statements only occur truth-functionally in statements.
I 70
Atomism/SellarsVsAtomism/SellarsVsWittgenstein: analysis does not stand for definition of terms, but for the exploration of the logical structure of discourse - which does not follow a simple pattern.
(External: Definition truth-functional: Tugendhat: depends on other sentences, not on situations).
(External: Definition truth-functional: Read: directly dependent only on the occurring concepts.)
II 314
SellarsVsWittgenstein/Paradox: to say of a particular atomic fact that it was represented by a certain elementary statement, we have to use a statement in which the elementary statement occurs, but this is not truth-functional. We have to say something like:
(1) S (in L) represents aRb. This representation relationship cannot be expressed through a statement. Wittgenstein dito.
II 321
If only simple non-linguistic objects could be represented, if complex objects were facts, that would lead to the well-known antinomy that there would have to be atomic facts which would be prerequisites for the fact that language can depict the world, but for which no example can be given if the speaker demands one. (?!)
Both difficulties are avoided by the realization that complex objects are no facts (VsTractatus).

Sell I
W. Sellars
Der Empirismus und die Philosophie des Geistes Paderborn 1999

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2017-04-28