Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous - Preface Summary & Analysis

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Summary

George Berkeley begins the preface by discussing the state of what he calls "speculative studies,” i.e. philosophy (3). He bemoans that philosophy is divorced from any practical application. This impracticality is in part, according to him, to blame on the distinction between our experiences of things and their real nature. As such, we can never know the true character of things. Not only does this kind of thinking run counter to common sense, but it gives rise to skepticism and a wide variety of paradoxes.

Berkeley lays out the philosophical project of the Three Dialogues, which aims to find the source of this skepticism and, if possible, to resolve it. He already carried out this program in his book The Principles of Human Knowledge, but the Dialogues are a clearer explication of his ideas. If he is successful, he thinks philosophy will return to...

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This section contains 648 words
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Buy the Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous Study Guide
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