Ideas of Nelson Goodman, by Theme

[American, b.1906, Born in Somerville. Professor at Brandeis University. Also at Harvard University.]

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1. Philosophy / F. Analytic Philosophy / 4. Ordinary Language
Without words or other symbols, we have no world
3. Truth / A. Truth Problems / 5. Truth Bearers
Truth is irrelevant if no statements are involved
4. Formal Logic / F. Set Theory ST / 5. Conceptions of Set / a. Sets as existing
Classes are a host of ethereal, platonic, pseudo entities
4. Formal Logic / F. Set Theory ST / 8. Critique of Set Theory
Two objects can apparently make up quite distinct arrangements in sets
4. Formal Logic / G. Formal Mereology / 1. Mereology
The counties of Utah, and the state, and its acres, are in no way different
5. Theory of Logic / C. Ontology of Logic / 4. Logic by Convention
If the result is bad, we change the rule; if we like the rule, we reject the result
7. Existence / A. Nature of Existence / 4. Existence as One
If the world is one it has many aspects, and if there are many worlds they will collect into one
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 4. Ontological Dependence
Being primitive or prior always depends on a constructional system
7. Existence / C. Structure of Existence / 5. Supervenience / d. Humean supervenience
We don't recognise patterns - we invent them
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 2. Reality
Reality is largely a matter of habit
7. Existence / D. Theories of Reality / 3. Anti-realism
We build our world, and ignore anything that won't fit
7. Existence / E. Categories / 5. Category Anti-Realism
A world can be full of variety or not, depending on how we sort it
8. Modes of Existence / C. Powers and Dispositions / 6. Dispositions / a. Dispositions
Dispositions seem more ethereal than behaviour; a non-occult account of them would be nice
8. Modes of Existence / E. Nominalism / 2. Resemblance Nominalism
If all and only red things were round things, we would need to specify the 'respect' of the resemblance
Without respects of resemblance, we would collect blue book, blue pen, red pen, red clock together
8. Modes of Existence / E. Nominalism / 3. Predicate Nominalism
If we apply the same word to different things, it is only because we are willing to do so
9. Objects / F. Identity among Objects / 3. Relative Identity
Things can only be judged the 'same' by citing some respect of sameness
10. Modality / B. Possibility / 9. Counterfactuals
Counterfactuals are true if logical or natural laws imply the consequence
13. Knowledge Criteria / B. Internal Justification / 5. Coherentism / b. Pro-coherentism
Discovery is often just finding a fit, like a jigsaw puzzle
14. Science / B. Scientific Theories / 3. Instrumentalism
Users of digital thermometers recognise no temperatures in the gaps
14. Science / B. Scientific Theories / 5. Commensurability
We lack frames of reference to transform physics, biology and psychology into one another
14. Science / C. Induction / 5. Paradoxes of Induction / a. Grue problem
Goodman showed that every sound inductive argument has an unsound one of the same form
Grue and green won't be in the same world, as that would block induction entirely
21. Aesthetics / B. Nature of Art / 1. Defining Art
Art is a referential activity, hence indefinable, but it has a set of symptoms
21. Aesthetics / B. Nature of Art / 6. Art as Language
Artistic symbols are judged by the fruitfulness of their classifications
A performance is only an instance of a work if there is not a single error
Art is like understanding a natural language, and needs a grasp of a symbol system
21. Aesthetics / C. Artistic Issues / 7. Copies of Art
A copy only becomes an 'instance' of an artwork if there is a system of notation
26. Natural Theory / D. Laws of Nature / 1. Laws of Nature
We don't use laws to make predictions, we call things laws if we make predictions with them