more from A.C. Ewing

Single Idea 21497

[catalogued under 13. Knowledge Criteria / B. Internal Justification / 5. Coherentism / c. Coherentism critique]

Full Idea

Without a detailed account, coherence is reduced to the mere muttering of the word 'coherence', which can be interpreted so as to cover all arguments, but only by making its meaning so wide as to rob it of almost all significance.

Gist of Idea

If undetailed, 'coherence' is just a vague words that covers all possible arguments


A.C. Ewing (Idealism: a critical survey [1934], p.246), quoted by Erik J. Olsson - Against Coherence 2.2

Book Reference

Olsson,Erik J.: 'Against Coherence' [OUP 2008], p.13

A Reaction

I'm a fan of coherence, but it is a placeholder, involving no intrinsic or detailed theory. I just think it points to the reality of how we make judgements, especially practical ones. We can categorise the inputs, and explain the required virtues.

Related Idea

Idea 21513 We can no more expect a precise definition of coherence than we can of the moral ideal [Ewing]