RE: MD When is an interpretation not an interpretation?

From: Paul Turner (
Date: Fri Oct 31 2003 - 10:53:06 GMT

  • Next message: Paul Turner: "RE: MD Self-consciousness"

    Hi Matt

    More questions!

    Pragmatists capitalize the "R" in "Reality" to differentiate it from
    "reality," that general stuff we experience, what's all around us. You
    get a big R Reality by making the appearance/reality split. What the
    split means is that some of the stuff we experience is "appearance" and
    some of it "Reality." When we don't make the distinction, none of our
    experience is either closer or farther away from Reality--its all just
    reality. Distance becomes a poor metaphor (so does "mediation" for that

    So, pragmatists make assumptions about reality, not Reality.

    Does this create a reality/Reality distinction?

    It may seem to be splitting hairs, but I think its quite the opposite.
    When we drop the dichotomy that gives us Platonic metaphysics, we drop
    the entire tradition of trying to get our descriptions of reality closer
    and closer to the Correct Description of Reality. Pragmatists don't
    like this tradition because, for one reason, they have no idea how we
    would decide when we have a Correct Description of Reality. Locke
    pointed that out a long time ago and philosophers skeptical about the
    idea of metaphysics have been playing on that same theme ever since.
    Instead, pragmatists simply forward description of reality and whichever
    ones work better, we use.

    Does this create a description/reality distinction or is "a
    description," for all intents and purposes, what pragmatists mean by
    reality? If so, does it follow that describing produces reality?



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