empiricist and neo-kantian elements in the Aufbau

Beytulhikme An International Journal of Philosophy 10 (2):451-468 (2020)
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Abstract

According to W. V. O. Quine's received view, Rudolf Carnap's Der Logische Aufbau der Welt (henceforth Aufbau) is a radical empiricist project that attempts at reducing scientific knowledge to a phenomenalistic basis. In Quine's reading, having a phenomenalistic basis is an essential part of the thesis of the Aufbau. According to Michael Friedman, on the other hand, Aufbau is a neo-Kantian project that is primarily concerned with showing the possibility of objective and unified scientific knowledge. Thus, for Friedman, Carnap's choice of phenomenalistic language is rather circumstantial. In this paper, I argue that both Quine and Friedman focus on two different aspects of the Aufbau, which as I shall suggest were equally significant and essential for Carnap's philosophical outlook at the time he was writing Aufbau. Hence, Aufbau should be appreciated for its truly ambitious objective that comprises both the radical empiricist and the neo-Kantian goals.

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Saniye Vatansever
Bilkent University

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