Whitehead, Categories, and the Completion of the Copernican Revolution

The Monist 66 (3):367-386 (1983)
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Philosophy is, and has been, many things to many people, and that is fine. Some of those persons who do, or have done, philosophy have engaged in the business of creating categoreal schemes. Were one to ask why these persons set about to construct categoreal schemes, the answer would have to be complex—the conscious motivations, purposes, and goals of system-builders are undoubtedly various. And that is fine. So when I suggest, as I am about to, an account of what it is that categoreal schemes are really trying to do, it must be understood that I do not intend my account to be dogmatically a priori. I have simply thought about some of the great systematizers and the categoreal schemes they have concocted, have admittedly done this reflecting from the perspective of Whitehead’s process metaphysics, and have arrived at certain conclusions about what might be viewed as a diagnostic tool for understanding many of the interesting and historically important categoreal schemes.



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