A Response to Comments

Review of Metaphysics 6 (3):483 - 485 (1953)
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I have admitted different kinds of power but the admission does not make it objectionable--in spite of Dr. Beardsley's point and Mr. Gr├╝nbaum's opening statement--to use the same word in order to indicate that all these kinds are under the same category--Mr. Williams' rejection of the category notwithstanding--of latent but directed tendencies or dispositions. Let my critics envisage power by analogy with, and including, the physical vector of force. i.e. as something which we represent by an arrow, to induce them to reconsider Dr. Beardsley's point and to concede that the Gestalt forces of cohesion and personal dispositions belong to the category under consideration since both are directed agencies. The directedness of power--let me add with reference to Mr. Feigl's point and to one of Mr. Krikorian's questions --enables me to account for the so-called teleological situations without assuming a metaphysics of teleology. In particular, I can mention a "feed-back" mechanism in order to give an example of the transformation of directed into directing, or controlling, power.



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