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The Threefold Cord By Hilary Putnam

The Threefold Cord by Hilary Putnam

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Summary

Offers solutions to some of philosophy's vexing problems. This book examines the problem of realism: Is objective truth possible? It acknowledges the impasse between empirical and idealist approaches to this question, critiquing them both, however, by highlighting the false assumption they share, that we cannot perceive the world directly.

The Threefold Cord Summary

The Threefold Cord: Mind, Body, and World by Hilary Putnam

What is the relationship between our perceptions and reality? What is the relationship between the mind and the body? These are questions with which philosophers have grappled for centuries, and they are topics of considerable contemporary debate as well. Hilary Putnam has approached the divisions between perception and reality and between mind and body with great creativity throughout his career. Now, in The Threefold Cord: Mind, Body, and World, he expounds upon these issues, elucidating both the strengths and weaknesses of current schools of thought. With his characteristic wit and acuity, Putnam offers refreshing solutions to some of philosophy's most vexing problems. Putnam first examines the problem of realism: is objective truth possible? He acknowledges the deep impasse between empirical and idealist approaches to this question, critiquing them both, however, by highlighting the false assumption they share, that we cannot perceive the world directly. Drawing on the work of J. L. Austin and William James, Putnam develops a subtle and creative alternative, which he calls "natural realism." The second part of the book explores the mind-body question: is the mind independent of our interactions with the physical world? Again, Putnam critically assesses two sharply antithetical contemporary approaches and finds them both lacking. The Threefold Cord shows the entire mind-body debate to be miscast and draws on the later work of Wittgenstein, once more advancing original views on perception and thought and their relationship with both the body and the external world. Finally, Putnam takes up two related problems-the role of causality in human behavior and whether or not thoughts and sensations have an "existence" all their own. With Putnam's lucid prose and insightful examples, The Threefold Cord loosens the Gordian knots into which philosophy has bound itself over the issue of epistemology.

The Threefold Cord Reviews

[A] combination of intellectual enthusiasm and dialectical ingenuity... [this] new book... defends a kind of common sense realism. The lectures that are collected in this volume... are philosopher's philosophy. The New Republic

About Hilary Putnam

Hilary Putnam is Cogan University Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Harvard University. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and a corresponding fellow of the British Academy. Among his many books are Philosophical Papers, Realism with a Human Face, Words and Life, Renewing Philosophy, and Pragmatism.

Table of Contents

Part I: Sense, Nonsense and the Senses: An Inquiry into the Powers of the Human Mind 1. The Antinomy of Realism 2. The Importance of Being Austin: The Need for a "Second Naivete" 3. The Face of Cognition Part II: Mind and Body 1. "I Thought of what I called 'an Automatic Sweetheart" 2. Are Psychological Conditions "Internal States"? 3. Psychophysical Correlation Part III: Afterwords First Afterword: Causation and Explanation Second Afterword: Are Appearances "Qualia"?

Additional information

GOR006583118
The Threefold Cord: Mind, Body, and World by Hilary Putnam
Used - Good
Paperback
Columbia University Press
2001-04-05
256
0231102879
9780231102872
N/A
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
The book has been read but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact and the cover is intact. Some minor wear to the spine.

Customer Reviews - The Threefold Cord