Carnap Rudolf

<history of philosophy, biography> german-American philosopher. A leading logical positivist, Carnap (1891-1970) proposed in Der logische Aufbau der Welt (The Logical Structure of the World) (1929) and Logische Syntax der Sprache (The Logical Syntax of Language) (1934) that all meaningful assertions in a description of reality must be derived from basic statements of experience. Carnap's influential articles "Pseudo-Problems in Philosophy" (1928) and "The Elimination of Metaphysics trough Logical Analysis of Language" (1932) propose that many traditional philosophical disputes amount to little more than differences in poetic rhetoric. His "Empiricism, Semantics, and Ontology" (1950) considers the degree of ontological commitment entailed by linguistic reference to abstract entities. In Meaning and Necessity: A Study in Semantics and Modal Logic (1947) and Logical Foundations of Probability (1950), Carnap tried to devise a purely formal representation of the degree of confirmation to which scientific hypotheses are susceptible. Carnap's notions about the formation of scientific theories are expressed in Philosophical Foundations of Physics (1966). Recommended Reading: Alan W. Richardson, Carnap's Construction of the World: The Aufbau and the Emergence of Logical Empiricism (Cambridge, 1997); Bryan G. Norton, Linguistic Frameworks and Ontology: A Re-Examination of Carnap's Metaphilosophy (De Gruyter, 1977); and Philosophy of Rudolph Carnap, ed. by Paul A. Schilpp (Open Court, 1974).

[A Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names]

<2001-10-12>

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Nearby terms: cardinality « cardinality of an interpretation « cardinal number « Carnap Rudolf » Carneades » Carroll Lewis » Cartesian coordinates