Knowledge and Reality: Selected Essays

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Knowledge and Reality brings together a selection of Colin McGinn's philosophical essays from the 1970s to the 1990s, whose unifying theme is the relation between the mind and the world. The essays range over a set of prominent topics in contemporary philosophy, including the analysis ofknowledge, the a priori, necessity, possible worlds, realism, mental representation, appearance and reality, and colour. McGinn has written a new postscript to each essay, placing it in its philosophical context by sketching the background against which it was written, explaining its relations toother notable work, and offering his current reflections on the topic. The volume thus traces the development of McGinn's ideas and their role in some central philosophical debates. Seen together the essays offer a many-sided defence of realism, while emphasizing the epistemological price thatrealism exacts.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
The Structure of Content
152
Charity Interpretation and Belief
168
Radical Interpretation and Epistemology
181
The Mechanism of Reference
197
Truth and Use
225
An A Priori Argument for Realism
247
Two Notions of Realism?
267
Realist Semantics and ContentAscription
279
Another Look at Colour
298
The Appearance of Colour
314
Index
327
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About the author (1999)


Colin McGinn is Professor of Philosophy at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. He was previously Wilde Reader in Mental Philosophy at the University of Oxford, and before that Reader in Philosophy at University College London.

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