By Abraham Kandel

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Wood. Russell’s Philosophy: A Study of its Development. In Russell, Bertrand, My Philosophical Development, New York: Simon and Schuster, 255-277, 1959. LOGIC FOR MEINONGIAN OBJECT THEORY SEMANTICS Dale Jacquette 1 MEINONG ON INTENDED OBJECTS Alexius Meinong (1853–1920) was a talented musician, historian, psychologist, and philosopher — but not much of a logician. His student Ernst Mally was a highly competent logician, and served as a liaison for Meinong between current developments in formal symbolic logic and the school of intentional experimental psychology and semantic theory that Meinong founded in Graz, Austria, at the turn of the previous century.

Russell, 1907, pp. 272f] This inductivist element of Russell’s mathematical epistemology differs markedly from the often-repeated account that identifies Russell as a paradigm advocate of the view that mathematical knowledge gains its certainty directly as a result of its deductive foundations. ” Such an interpretation is understandable. After all, other logicists have conspicuously advocated positions which are decidedly inconsistent with any inductive or “regressive” element whatsoever. Frege, for example, espouses the view that axioms are truths, as are theorems, but that “they are truths for which no proof can be given in our system, and for which no proof is needed.

Over the years, the axioms that Russell and Whitehead introduced have been simplified in significant ways. The theory of types is unbearably complicated and scholars still argue about whether Russell’s use of propositional functions was sophisticated or confused. There appears to be no significant appreciation of the explosion of meta-theoretical results that would soon follow Russell’s groundbreaking insights. But regardless of such shortcomings, a century of hindsight has proved the lasting value of Russell’s work.

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