Truth and Predication

Truth and Predication

3.86 (21 ratings by Goodreads)
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This brief book takes readers to the very heart of what it is that philosophy can do well. Completed shortly before Donald Davidson's death at 85, Truth and Predication brings full circle a journey moving from the insights of Plato and Aristotle to the problems of contemporary philosophy. In particular, Davidson, countering many of his contemporaries, argues that the concept of truth is not ambiguous, and that we need an effective theory of truth in order to live well.

Davidson begins by harking back to an early interest in the classics, and an even earlier engagement with the workings of grammar; in the pleasures of diagramming sentences in grade school, he locates his first glimpse into the mechanics of how we conduct the most important activities in our life--such as declaring love, asking directions, issuing orders, and telling stories. Davidson connects these essential questions with the most basic and yet hard to understand mysteries of language use--how we connect noun to verb. This is a problem that Plato and Aristotle wrestled with, and Davidson draws on their thinking to show how an understanding of linguistic behavior is critical to the formulating of a workable concept of truth.

Anchored in classical philosophy, Truth and Predication nonetheless makes telling use of the work of a great number of modern philosophers from Tarski and Dewey to Quine and Rorty. Representing the very best of Western thought, it reopens the most difficult and pressing of ancient philosophical problems, and reveals them to be very much of our day.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 192 pages
  • 127 x 202 x 12.7mm | 181.44g
  • The Belknap Press
  • Cambridge, Mass., United States
  • English
  • 0674030400
  • 9780674030404
  • 847,736

Table of contents

Foreword Preface Introduction 1. Theories of Truth 2. What More Is There to Truth? 3. The Content of the Concept of Truth 4. The Problem of Predication 5. Failed Attempts 6. Truth and Predication 7. A Solution Bibliography Index
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Review quote

"Davidson's book is a fitting conclusion to his oeuvre. It achieves what is perhaps its main objective in demonstrating the centrality of the concept of truth in the field of the philosophy of language. More, it develops and unifies many of the author's favorite themes and does so with energy and grace. It is not uncontentious; and it would be less interesting if it were. It makes us the more aware of the loss of one of the most powerful and influential figures of our time." - P. F. Strawson, Times Literary Supplement "[Truth and Predication] contains important new ideas, confirming that Davidson's thought was still as fertile, subtle and provocative as ever." - E. J. Lowe, Times Higher Education Supplement"
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About Donald Davidson

Donald Davidson was Professor of Philosophy, Emeritus, at the University of California, Berkeley.
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Rating details

21 ratings
3.86 out of 5 stars
5 24% (5)
4 43% (9)
3 29% (6)
2 5% (1)
1 0% (0)
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