Analogia Entis

  • Dorothy Emmet

Abstract

We are approaching the question raised at the outset: the nature of metaphysics, and the sense in which it may be held to be both analogical and significant. This question can hardly be longer deferred. Science and history, we have seen, both employ analogical concepts in the form of models or fictions, and if it were possible to confine our attention to science and history as positivistic disciplines, such analogical concepts might be no more than convenient ways of organizing correlations of empirical data. But science and history cannot be adequately described as purely positivist disciplines; the working scientist is not generally content to regard his models as merely conventions. He believes that they serve to make the nature of the physical world intelligible in some more realistic sense than can a mere convention; and in support of this he can point to the way in which the good model suggests further correlations of empirical data. The historian can rest still less securely in pure positivism. For though he may claim only to be telling us what was the case, he must in fact give us selected patterns of events organized and interpreted according to judgments of relevance and importance.

Keywords

Malaria Malaria Parasite Metaphor 

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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1966

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dorothy Emmet
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.The University of ManchesterOxfordUK
  2. 2.Lady Margaret HallOxfordUK

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