Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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A priori: something that we can know without prior (empirical) investigation. Is the inventory of a priori certainties purely logical? Is a priori knowledge always necessary?

Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

John Stuart Mill on A priori - Dictionary of Arguments

Höffe I 346
A priori/Mill/Höffe: MillVsKant: According to Mill's empiricism, in contrast to Kant and German idealism, there is no such thing as a pre-empirical insight, but only an empirical, i.e. a posteriori insight. Even mathematics and logic should be based on experience and its inductive generalizations. However, because of the extraordinarily large amount of evidence for mathematical statements, the appearance of necessity is said to arise.
>Mathematics, >Necessity, >Empiricism, >Evidence, Logic.
Höffe I 347
A priori thinking also supports false doctrines and poor institutions.
Practice/Theory: With this argument, Mill puts all theoretical philosophy, including the theory of science and epistemology, at the service of practice. One can speak here of epistemological liberalism.
>Practise, >Liberalism.
Politics: In any case, the uncompromising primacy of the empirical standpoint acquires a political meaning, the rejection of the a priori a therapeutic, or more precisely, preventive purpose.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Mill I
John St. Mill
A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and Inductive, London 1843
German Edition:
Von Namen, aus: A System of Logic, London 1843
Eigennamen, Ursula Wolf, Frankfurt/M. 1993

Mill II
J. St. Mill
Utilitarianism: 1st (First) Edition Oxford 1998

Höffe I
Otfried Höffe
Geschichte des politischen Denkens München 2016

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Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2023-06-04
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