Willard Van Orman Quine

1908 -

A Quote by Willard Van Orman Quine on existence, justice, laws, myth, and truth

Just as the introduction of the irrational numbers ... is a convenient myth [which] simplifies the laws of arithmetic ... so physical objects are postulated entities which round out and simplify our account of the flux of existence... The conceptional scheme of physical objects is [likewise] a convenient myth, simpler than the literal truth and yet containing that literal truth as a scattered part.

Willard Van Orman Quine (1908 -)

Source: J. Koenderink Solid Shape, Cambridge Mass.: MIT Press, 1990.

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by Willard Van Orman Quine on certainty, facts, faith, language, temptation, truth, and world

It is obvious that truth in general depends on both language and extra-linguistic fact. The statement 'Brutus killed Caesar' would be false if the world had been different in certain ways, but it would also be false if the word 'killed' happened rather to have the sense of 'begat'. Thus one is tempted to suppose in general that the truth of a statement is somehow analysable into a linguistic component and a factual component. Given this supposition it next seems reasonable that in some statements the factual component should be null; and that these are the analytic statements. But for all its a priori reasonableness, a boundary between the analytic and synthetic statements simply has not been drawn. That there is such a distinction to be drawn at all is an unempirical dogma of empiricists, a metaphysical article of faith.

Willard Van Orman Quine (1908 -)

Source: Two Dogmas of Empiricism by Willard Van Orman Quine

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by Willard Van Orman Quine on books, logic, and study

If pressed to supplement Tweedledee's ostensive definition of logic with a discursive definition of the same subject, I would say that logic is the systematic study of the logical truths. Pressed further, I would say that a sentence is logically true if all sentences with its grammatical structure are true. Pressed further still, I would say to read this book.

Willard Van Orman Quine (1908 -)

Source: Philosophy of Logic by Willard Van Orman Quine

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by Willard Van Orman Quine on chance, change, problems, science, present, and world

For me the problem of induction is a problem about the world: a problem of how we, as we are now (by our present scientific lights), in a world we never made, should stand better than random, or coin-tossing chances changes of coming out right when we predict by inductions. . . .

Willard Van Orman Quine (1908 -)

Source: H. Kornblith, ed. Naturalizing Epistemology, 1994, Cambridge, Mass, MIT Press, p.66.

Contributed by: Zaady

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