more from John Dupré

Single Idea 17376

[catalogued under 7. Existence / E. Categories / 2. Categorisation]

Full Idea

The most important desideratum of a classificatory scheme is that assigning an object to a particular classification tell us as much as possible about that object.

Gist of Idea

We should aim for a classification which tells us as much as possible about the object


John Dupré (The Disorder of Things [1993], Ch 1)

Book Reference

Dupré,John: 'The Disorder of Things' [Harvard 1995], p.18

A Reaction

We should probably say that the aim is a successful explanation, rather than a heap of information. If we are totally baffled by a particular type of object, it is presumably important to group the instances together, to focus the bafflement.