Words and Ideas

Kenneth P. Winkler

in Berkeley: An Interpretation

Published in print March 1994 | ISBN: 9780198235095
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191598685 | DOI:

Series: Clarendon Paperbacks

Words and Ideas

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  • History of Western Philosophy


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This chapter explores the difference between two kinds of signs that Berkeley followed Locke in recognizing: words and ideas. I argue that Berkeley does not assume that ideas are images of things but concludes it, as part of a deliberate attempt to explain how at least some of our thoughts succeed in referring to the world. For Berkeley, representation—the intentionality or ‘aboutness’ of thought—is sometimes a matter of resemblance.

Keywords: image; intentionality; representation; resemblance; resemblance; sign; word

Chapter.  9503 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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