Braithwaite R. B., Russell Bertrand, Waismann Friedrich. The Relevance of Psychology to Logic: A Symposium. Aristotelian Society. Verifiability · F. Waismann. In Gilbert Ryle & Antony Flew (eds.), Journal of The Principle of Lazerowitz – – Mind 46 () Friedrich Waismann. Verifiability (Part II of a symposium). Aristotelian Society, supplementary volume XIX (), pp. – – Volume

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The iconoclasm of the logical positivists was based on this criterion of meaning, for according to the verifiability principle a great many of the sentences of traditional philosophy for example, “Reality is spiritual,” “The moral rightness of an action is a nonempirical property,” “Beauty is significant form,” “God created the world for the fulfillment of his purpose” must be cognitively meaningless.

But “could” here cannot mean “factually could,” since we can speak meaningfully of occurrences that are factually impossible. For a further examination of this question, it would seem that the correct approach would be to give a completely general analysis of “knowing the use of a predicate.

Reprinted in Logical Positivismedited by A.

But then it seems that the only sense waiamann can be given to saying that the experiences are logically possible is that the statement ” Pa ” is contingent. One of the most serious difficulties he encounters is that of giving a satisfactory account of confirmability. Hence, the requirement of strong verifiability would have the strange consequence that the denial of an existential statement would never be meaningful, and this would involve the rejection of the fundamental logical principle that if a statement S is true, then not- S is false, and that if S is false, then not- S is true; 5 if a statement S is meaningful by the present requirement and N is any meaningless statement, then the molecular statement S or N must be meaningful; 6 the present requirement presupposes that observation statements are conclusively verifiable, for unless this is so, no statement at all, not even a statement that is logically equivalent to a finite conjunction of observation statements, will be conclusively verifiable — or cognitively meaningful.


Sign in Create an account. David Rynin – – Verifiabjlity This article has no associated abstract.

Burns and Oates, However, in an accepted philosophical usage, every proposition is either true or false, and hence a fortiori a proposition cannot be meaningless. A recommendation or a friedrichh has a different logical status; it is not successful by being true or unsuccessful by being false. Home Humanities Encyclopedias almanacs transcripts and maps Verifiability Principle.


Friedrich Waismann – – Routledge. Added to PP index Total downloads 85 77, of 2, Recent downloads 6 months 8 65, of 2, How can I increase my downloads? Cambridge University Press, Nevertheless, the criticism of the verifiability principle now being considered admits that for a sentence to be an “empirical sentence” it must express a statement that is in some sense verifiable, that is, the truth conditions of which can be known by reference to experience.

But this formulation, as Ayer recognizes in the second edition of his book, permits any meaningless statement to be verifiable. What can or cannot be said of statements applies equally to propositions, except that a proposition cannot be meaningless, that is, it cannot be expressed by a meaningless sentence.

See also Basic Statements ; Logical Positivism. Thus, even in a more qualified version of empiricism the difficulty still remains of making clear what it is to know that a statement is true “by reference to experience.

Verifiability in Flew, A. Richard Creath – – PSA: Print this article Print all entries for this topic Cite this article. The logical possibility of verifying a given statement can then be explained without mentioning the experiences of any particular person or indeed the experiences of anyone at all.

For the foregoing reasons, it cannot be held that the verifiability principle is a criterion for determining the meaning of any particular sentence. The criterion of conclusive falsifiability says, in effect, that a statement S is meaningful if and only if not- S is verifiabilty verifiable.

Veirfiability, in ” Pa ” the object a is simply named or referred to, and the property P ascribed to it — and it seems that every statement of this form must be contingent.

Schlick attempted to avoid this objection by distinguishing between the content and form of experience. But, unlike the advocates of operationalism, they meant by “the method of verification” not an actual procedure but the logical possibility of verification.


A principle that expresses a linguistic recommendation is no doubt closely related to a corresponding analytic statement, but the recommendation itself is not tautological and uninformative. If a sentence is used to describe an experienceable state of the world, then the semantic rules governing its predicates relate those predicates, directly or indirectly, to that state of the world.

Request removal from index. Operationalism, verifiabiliyt held by P. The two preceding definitions show, however, that there is a close connection between the notion of cognitive or factual meaning and the notion of truth.

But if it is analytic, then it is tautological and uninformative; at best it only exemplifies a proposed use of the terms “cognitive meaning” and “understanding.

Baylis : Review: Friedrich Waismann, Verifiability (Part II of a Symposium)

All of these exclude metaphysical statements as being meaningless. Epistemicism, Waismanm, and Conditional Obligation. For the kind of clarification that is being sought we now need a different and independent explanation of the meaning of an observation statement. Holdcroft – – Journal of Symbolic Logic 25 4: Ray Lepley – – New York: In its later formulations it is presented simply as a criterion for determining whether a sentence is ferifiability or factually meaningful.

This position seems to be simply incoherent. To meet this point some of the later exponents of the principle say that a grammatically well-formed indicative sentence, whether it is cognitively meaningful or not, expresses a “statement”; the term proposition is retained for what is expressed by a cognitively meaningful sentence — that is, propositions are treated as a subclass of statements.

These more recent objections to the verifiability principle occur in most post-Wittgensteinian discussions of the topic of meaning.

Pragmatism about Truth in Philosophy of Language. Added to PP index Total downloads 9of 2, Recent downloads 6 months 2of 2, How can I increase my downloads?