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Aiming at Truth
 
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Aiming at Truth
 
 
Palgrave Macmillan
 
 
 
 
 
28 Nov 2006
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£78.00
|Hardback Out of Stock
  
9780230506831
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DescriptionReviewsContentsAuthors

Is it either possible or desirable to aim at truth? The answer seems clearly 'yes'. However, the question of what it really means for our beliefs and assertions to be 'truth-directed' is not obvious. In a highly original treatment, Nicholas Unwin argues that we need to weaken our ordinary notion of a belief if we are to deal with radical scepticism without surrendering to idealism. Topics examined also include the realism/anti-realism debate, whether there could be alien conceptual schemes, the relationship between genuine belief and mere pragmatic acceptance, and what might happen to us if we abandoned the former in place of the latter. A new 'ecological' model of knowledge is defended which does not logically imply the truth of what is known. However, it is also shown that desirability of believing only what is true can be given a partial, though adequate defence.


Description

Is it either possible or desirable to aim at truth? The answer seems clearly 'yes'. However, the question of what it really means for our beliefs and assertions to be 'truth-directed' is not obvious. In a highly original treatment, Nicholas Unwin argues that we need to weaken our ordinary notion of a belief if we are to deal with radical scepticism without surrendering to idealism. Topics examined also include the realism/anti-realism debate, whether there could be alien conceptual schemes, the relationship between genuine belief and mere pragmatic acceptance, and what might happen to us if we abandoned the former in place of the latter. A new 'ecological' model of knowledge is defended which does not logically imply the truth of what is known. However, it is also shown that desirability of believing only what is true can be given a partial, though adequate defence.


Reviews


'Aiming at Truth is high class philosophy. Nicholas Unwin argues for an iconoclastic position with clarity, elegance and wit. It is refreshing to read a book that grapples with the challenges presented by relativism and scepticism with such seriousness and depth.' - Julian Dodd, Department of Philosophy, University of Manchester, UK

'Nicholas Unwin's Aiming at Truth is an ambitious and wide-ranging book.' - Stephen R. Grimm, Mind


Contents

Introduction
Truth and the Norms of Assertion
Scepticism - And How Not to Avoid it
Cognitive Contingency
Belief and Acceptance
Belief and Knowledge
Pragmatism and the Value of Truth
Relativism and the Limits of Conversability
Mind, World and Realism
Bibliography
Index


Authors

NICHOLAS UNWIN studied at the University of Oxford. He has taught at the Universities of Oxford and Essex, and is now Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Bolton.