4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Truth is simply correspondence with the facts,
This review is from: Objective Knowledge: An Evolutionary Approach (Paperback)
In these important essays, Karl Popper discusses Hume's problem (induction), Tarski's philosophical achievements, Wittgenstein's language problem, his three worlds and all sorts of `isms'.
Hume noted that, however great the number of repetitions, man cannot justify the reasoning that an experience will lead again to the same outcome (no induction). But, why do reasonable people believe it? Out of `custom or habit', without which man would hardly survive.
Popper's solution for the problem is `deduction'. People function within a theoretical framework and should continue to do so as long as the framework has not been falsified or improved.
Tarski's philosophical importance is immense.
He demonstrated that truth is simply correspondence with the facts.
Moreover, he showed that any language contains descriptions of facts and a meta-language which contains statements about these facts. He solved, thereby, the liar's paradox.
For Wittgenstein, a proposition is a picture of reality. More, it is impossible to discuss the relationship between language and reality, because language cannot be discussed by language.
As Ray Monk explained in his brilliant book about Wittgenstein, language was not the centre of Wittgenstein's preoccupations, but ethics. Language was only a useful tool in order to speak clearly about ethical problems.
For Karl Popper, our universe is composed by three worlds: the physical world, the world of our mental experiences and an objective world (our actual knowledge written down in books, on hard disks, on visual displays ...)
But, as W. Van Orman Quine astutely remarked: why do we need world 2? It is the same as world 1. Popper rejected categorically physicalism.
Popper lambastes rightly the megalomania of many philosophers who cover their `incompetence' in obscure, would-be highbrow sentences and abstractions.
All philosophic texts should be written in simple, lucid and easily comprehensible language, as used in these texts.
This book is a must read for all those interested in the (philosophical) world we live in.