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common sense

Subject Philosophy

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405106795.2004.x


E pistemology The natural and ordinary beliefs that are taken for granted by people independent of philosophical training. While rationalistic philosophy often starts by challenging and rejecting common sense, there is a kind of philosophy that argues that the general consent that exists regarding the views of common sense offers justification for accepting them in preference to skeptical or revisionary doctrines. Historically, Thomas Reid , the main figure in the Scottish school of common sense, argued with great subtlety against Hume 's skepticism and his associated theory of ideas. G. E. Moore , the leading defender of common sense in the last century, claims in his famous paper “A Defense of Common Sense” that a philosopher's common sense convictions are more certain that any of the arguments purporting to establish skepticism. Another meaning of common sense, initiated by Aristotle (Greek, koine aisthesis ), refers to a faculty that integrates the data from the five specialized senses. This meaning is accepted by the scholastics and also elaborated in the philosophy of Descartes . Kant adapted the Aristotelian notion to form an account of common sense as reflective, public, and critical, in contrast to what he saw as Reid's vulgar account of common sense. “Both common sense and physics supplement precepts by the assumption that things do not cease to exist when ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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