The Logical Foundations of Bradley's Metaphysics
Judgment, Inference, and Truth
By James Allard
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print Publication Year: 2004
Online Publication Date:September 2009
Chapter DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511498008.003
Subjects: Nineteenth-century philosophy
Henry Sidgwick reports two exchanges he had with his old friend T. H. Green that were separated by a number of years. Sidgwick says:
I remember writing to him after a visit to Berlin in 1870, and expressing a desire to “get away from Hegel”: he replied that it seemed to him one might as well try to “get away from thought itself”. I remember, on the other hand, that in the last philosophical talk I had with him, he said, “I looked into Hegel the other day, and found it a strange Wirrwarr”. …(Sidgwick 1901, 19)
Sidgwick uses these reminiscences to document Green's movement away from Hegel, a movement common among British idealists in the 1880s. Many were still attracted to Hegel's reconciliation of science and religion, but their doubts about Hegel's way of effecting the reconciliation were growing. Increasingly, idealists were feeling a need to reexamine the nature of thought in order to determine whether thought was indeed identical to reality. Bradley's Principles of Logic was the first extended British attempt to confront this issue. The confrontation reaches its climax in the final two chapters of The Principles of Logic, both entitled “The Validity of Inference,” which conclude with Bradley's ringing denunciation of the attempt to identify thought and reality (PL 590–1).
Unfortunately, knowing that this is Bradley's conclusion is of surprisingly little help in understanding the path he follows to reach it or understanding the considerations that he thinks decide the issue.
Reference Title: Bibliography
Reference Type: bibliography