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Knowledge of the external world /

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Contemporary philosophy is marked by a setting aside or dissolution of the traditional problems of modern philosophy. Thus the problem of our knowledge of the external world is widely believed to have been disposed of or dissolved by Wittgenstein and others. In this book, Bruce Aune challenges this assumption. In the first half of Knowledge of the External World, Aune considers the history of the problem in the work of the great modern philosophers, Descartes, Locke, Berkeley, Kant, and Mill. Then turning to current debates, he argues that the problem has re-emerged and that an entirely new approach is needed. By examining the attempted dissolutions, Aune shows that the fundamental problem remains as a serious intellectual issue: one concerning the nature of permissible experimental or `inductive' inference. To resolve this issue, he undertakes a revision of empiricist epistemology and the development of the required theory of inference. Knowledge of the External World is an excellent historical systematic analysis of a central problem of philosophy and a fine introduction to the theory of knowledge. It will be essential reading for students of epistemology, metaphysics, and philosophy.

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