more from Karl Popper

Single Idea 12177

[catalogued under 9. Objects / D. Essence of Objects / 11. Essence of Artefacts]

Full Idea

One might adopt the view that certain things of our own making, such as clocks, may well be said to have 'essences', viz. their 'purposes', and what makes them serve these purposes.

Gist of Idea

Human artefacts may have essences, in their purposes


Karl Popper (Conjectures and Refutations [1963], 3.3 n17)

Book Reference

Popper,Karl: 'Conjectures and Refutations' [RKP 1965], p.106

A Reaction

This is from one of the arch-opponents of essentialism. Could we take him on a slippery slope into essences for evolved creatures, or their organs? His argument says admitting an essence for a clock prevents using it for another purpose.