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


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I suggest that in his early, unpublished notebooks, Berkeley experimented with a radically formal conception of necessity, according to which necessity is nothing more than the inclusion of one idea within the definition of another. Berkeley's experiment was defeated by the same objective connections (and oppositions) that rule out the existence of simple ideas. Although Berkeley was left without an understanding of the nature of necessity, he never wavered in his conviction that necessity is something objective—that ideas and the world have an inherent, inescapable structure.

Keywords: necessity; objective connection; simple idea

Chapter.  12153 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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