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By Overgaard, Søren; Burwood, Stephen; Gilbert, Paul

What's philosophy? How should still we do it? Why should still we hassle to? those are the categories of questions addressed through metaphilosophy - the philosophical research of the character of philosophy itself. scholars of philosophy this present day are confronted with a complicated and daunting array of philosophical tools, methods and types and in addition deep divisions corresponding to the infamous rift among analytic and Continental philosophy. This ebook takes readers via an entire diversity of ways - analytic as opposed to Continental, scientistic as opposed to humanistic, 'pure' as opposed to utilized - permitting them to find and comprehend those alternative ways of doing philosophy. in actual fact and accessibly written, it is going to stimulate mirrored image on philosophical perform and should be worthwhile for college kids of philosophy and different philosophically prone readers

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27 On this view, philosophy in the hands of humans will never move beyond its immature state, so the lack of progress is easily explained. And it makes scant sense to accuse philosophers past and present of doing philosophy the wrong way, given that there is no right way for us to do it. Yet these advantages come at a cost. For if McGinn is right, philosophising seems an utterly pointless activity. 28 But we suspect that most philosophers would find it hard to swallow the notion that the activity they engage in is utterly pointless.

18 Hampshire appears to think his list is exhaustive insofar as the principal interest of philosophers is concerned, but this seems questionable. Certain branches of philosophy, arguably central to philosophy from the beginning, are hardly represented at all in Hampshire’s list, including the philosophy of mind (‘see’, ‘think’ and so on), logic (‘therefore’) and ­philosophical aesthetics (‘beauty’, ‘art’). But Hampshire’s fundamental intuition that there is some relatively limited number of notions that are, and always have been, central to what concerns philosophers – some ‘centre of gravity’, as we put it before – seems right.

Take a candidate methodological ‘fence’: philosophy, let us say, is distinguished by its a priori – or ‘armchair’ – methods. 10 But any attempt to offer a narrower characterisation of the method – for example ‘conceptual analysis’ – will almost certainly exclude too much. The suggestion that Quine 1975: 228. Blackburn 2004: xiii. Note that Blackburn does not endorse essentialism. 10 Perhaps the definition also excludes something that should have been included: after all, there is such a thing as ‘experimental philosophy’.

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