A study in philosophical methodology aimed at providing a clear view of the scope and limits of philosophical inquiry.
While the pursuit of philosophy “of” studies—of science, of art, of politics—has blossomed, the philosophy of philosophy remains a comparatively neglected domain. In this book, Nicholas Rescher fills this gap by offering a study in methodology aimed at providing a clear view of the scope and limits of philosophical inquiry. He argues that philosophy’s inability to resolve all of the problems of the field does not preclude the prospect of achieving a satisfactory resolution of many or even most of them.
“…the text is very accessible and the pithy nature of the controversial claims allows readers ample room to explore their own metaphilosophical convictions.” — Philosophy in Review
“Disgruntlement with the endemic disagreements among philosophers down through the centuries has led to intermittent hope that some gifted metaphilosopher might create a ‘perennial’ philosophy. Nicholas Rescher has a more modest, but still worthwhile, goal in mind—to trace the development of certain perennial issues in the history of philosophy and examine the principles and methods that have led to progress on these issues. Short of final solutions, he shows that many refinements have been successful and the insolubilia of old have become less vexing.” — Howard P. Kainz, author of G. W. F. Hegel: The Philosophical System
“Rescher’s book goes where philosophy rarely goes, offering a clear-eyed examination of the purposes, principles, and prospects of philosophizing itself. This is metaphilosophy at its very best, reflecting both the breadth of knowledge and the depth of insight of one of our very best philosophers.” — Patrick Grim, author of The Incomplete Universe: Totality, Knowledge, and Truth
Nicholas Rescher is University Professor of Philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh. He is the author of more than one hundred books, including Epistemology: An Introduction to the Theory of Knowledge; Realistic Pragmatism: An Introduction to Pragmatic Philosophy; Predicting the Future: An Introduction to the Theory of Forecasting; Process Metaphysics: An Introduction to Process Philosophy; and Dialectics: A Controversy-Oriented Approach to the Theory of Knowledge; all published by SUNY Press. Among his many achievements, he is former president of the American Philosophical Association and recipient of the Alexander von Humboldt Prize for Humanistic Scholarship.
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