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conceptual analysis

Subject Philosophy

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405106795.2004.x


P hilosophical method The activity of attempting to clarify the meanings of concepts or ideas by employing logical devices. It tries to discover what elements a concept is composed of and how these elements are related. It also states the relations between certain concepts and the necessary and sufficient conditions of the application of given concepts. Conceptual analysis is the basis for propositional analysis. Only when we understand the meaning of a word can we employ it in formulating precise questions and thus provide correct solutions. For analytical philosophy , this activity of reaching the understanding of a given concept is vital. In its early period, conceptual analysis was taken as a synonym of philosophy. “So his (i.e., the analytical philosopher's) selfawarded title of ‘analytical philosopher’ suggests ‘conceptual analysis’ as the favoured description of his favoured activity.” Strawson, Analysis and Metaphysics ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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