As with any scientific revolution, quantum mechanics entailed a profound revision of our fundamental epistemological concepts and also of our worldview as a whole. This was the case for the concepts of causality and reality. Around these concepts, there arose in the third decade of the last century a heated debate in which almost all the scientists and philosophers of the time took part and which in a certain sense is still going on today. The Author provides a reconstruction of the various different positions, from the "conservative" attempt to defend determinism to the most radical stochastic positions, and singles out in Ernst Cassirer’s solution the most convincing approach.
The description of Immanuel Kant’s last days and of the phrenological and craniometric studies of his skull gives the Author the opportunity to discuss the philosophical validity of biographies and more in general to re-examine the vexata quaestio of the relationship between philosophy and history of philosophy. Here the Author supports the thesis that, for the most part, any reference to the biographies of philosophers is essentially of no use – their works have to be judged as such, independently of whoever wrote them and also to a large extent of the historical context – and that there is the need to get back to a philosophical history of philosophy, while still maintaining the very rigorous approach to which the history of philosophy has accustomed us in the last few decades.
Il volume presenta una conferenza inedita di Willard Van Orman Quine, considerato oggi, a un secolo dalla sua nascita, uno dei filosofi più influenti del Novecento. Il testo offre poi alcuni saggi che fanno il punto della situazione sulla sua eredità, concentrandosi soprattutto sul nominalismo, la naturalizzazione dell’epistemologia e la teoria del significato. Completa il volume una bibliografia aggiornata degli scritti di Quine.
F.E. Beneke tra criticismo e positivismo