NATURALISM AND THE SURREPTITIOUS EMBRACE OF NECESSITY

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Abstract

Abstract: In this article, two philosophical positions that structure distinct approaches in the history of metaphysics and epistemology are briefly characterized and contrasted. While one view, “naturalism,” rejects an a priori commitment to necessity, the other view, “transcendentalism,” insists on that commitment. It is shown that at the level of the fundamentals of thought, judgment, and reason, the dispute dissolves, and the naturalists' employment of “necessity for all practical purposes” is at best only nominally distinct from the transcendentalists' use of the same concept.

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