Common Sense - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 18 pages of information about Common Sense.
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Common Sense

Several things can be learned about common sense from Dr. Johnson's attempt to refute George Berkeley by kicking the stone. Its philosophical incompetence is not one of them. Dr. Johnson of course misunderstood Berkeley, and his misunderstanding was not a collapse of common sense. He thought that if stones had, as Berkeley said, no "material substance" and were collections of "ideas," a boot ought to go through them without resistance. And if Berkeley had been maintaining that solid objects were only apparently solid and were really collections of what we would ordinarily call ideas, the refutation would have been an appropriate reaction of common sense.

The Notion of Common Sense

Berkeley

Berkeley's notebooks contain the reminder to himself: "To be eternally banishing Metaphisics &c & recalling Men to Common Sense" (Philosophical Commentaries, No. 751). Confident that he could always secure the neutrality of common sense when...

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This section contains 5,198 words
(approx. 18 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Common Sense Encyclopedia Article
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Common Sense from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.