Chapter

Real Definition

Richard Robinson

in Definition

Published in print March 1963 | ISBN: 9780198241607
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191680397 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198241607.003.0006
Real Definition

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The historical fact that many people believe that there is such a thing as the definition of things has been established, and we must now ask whether this belief is true. The search for real definitions, as initiated by Socrates and continued down to today, has not been one single kind of activity; it has included several different sorts of activity. Its practitioners have not distinguished these differences, but regarded them all as the one thing, definition; and of these activities at least one is wholly bad, because it assumes something false, while others are bad in the confused state in which they appear under the head of definition, but can be good if disentangled. This chapter describes each of these activities in turn. All of them are already pretty evident in the works of Plato.

Keywords: real definitions; Socrates; Plato

Chapter.  17334 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mathematics and Logic

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