Essay on Metaphysics


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In this classic analysis of metaphysics, the branch of philosophy that scholars in turn either hail as the source of all wisdom or condemn as dangerous nonsense, Collingwood steers a middle course. Although he takes exception to the ontological attributes derived from Aristotle, he holds nevertheless that there is a proper science of metaphysics. This science, he maintains, consists of the process of discovering the basic assumptions underlying every intellectual discipline, from philosophy to the natural sciences, and of explaining changes and developments in thought in terms of historical trends. A major contribution to the study of metaphysics, Essay on Metaphysics parallels the work of the sociologists of knowledge and foreshadows some of the central concerns of contemporary philosophy.

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