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Analysis and MetaphysicsAn Introduction to Philosophy$
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P. F. Strawson

Print publication date: 1992

Print ISBN-13: 9780198751182

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198751182.001.0001

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Reduction or Connection?

Reduction or Connection?

Basic Concepts

(p.17) 2 Reduction or Connection?
Analysis and Metaphysics

P. F. Strawson

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the different forms or objectives of a positive systematic analytical theory or conceptual analysis. Based on analogy with chemical and syntactical analyses, it appears that the task of analytical philosophy is to find ideas that are completely simple and free from internal conceptual complexity, and to demonstrate how the more or less complex ideas that are of interest to philosophers can be assembled by a kind of logical or conceptual construction out of the simple elements. From this, it can be said that the role of an analytical philosopher is to get a clear grasp of complex meanings through reduction, which seems a rather implausible task.

Keywords:   conceptual analysis, systematic analytical theory, analytical philosophy, reduction, logical construction

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