Chapter

Inquiry: The Fixation of Belief

C. J. Misak

in Truth and the End of Inquiry

Published in print March 2004 | ISBN: 9780199270590
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780191603174 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199270597.003.0003

Series: Oxford Philosophical Monographs

Inquiry: The Fixation of Belief

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This chapter argues that Peirce’s account of inquiry has a sane empiricism at its core: inquirers aim to get beliefs that fit with experience, broadly construed. When a belief, which has come into doubt, is replaced, the new belief is probably better. However, it may eventually be overthrown and shown to be false. When there are beliefs that would forever withstand the tests of experience and argument, what is the point of refusing to confer upon them the title ‘true’. According to the pragmatist, there is no point at all — only a spurious desire for transcendental metaphysics.

Keywords: Peirce; pragmatist; belief; truth; inquiry; scientific method

Chapter.  16822 words. 

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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