more from C.I. Lewis

Single Idea 9362

[catalogued under 10. Modality / A. Necessity / 11. Denial of Necessity]

Full Idea

Those laws and those laws only have necessary truth which we are prepared to maintain, no matter what.

Gist of Idea

Necessary truths are those we will maintain no matter what


C.I. Lewis (A Pragmatic Conception of the A Priori [1923], p.367)

Book Reference

Peirce,James,Dewey etc: 'Pragmatism - The Classic Writings', ed/tr. Thayer,H.S. [Hackett 1982], p.367

A Reaction

This bold and simple claim has famously been torpedoed by a well-known counterexample - that virtually every human being will cling on to the proposition "dogs have at some time existed" no matter what, but it clearly isn't a necessary truth.