Tenacity, Authority, Plausibility, Inquiry

Re: Peter Cameron

My favorite polymathematician, Charles Sanders Peirce, gave a fourfold classification of what he called “methods of fixing belief”, or “settling opinion”, most notably and seminally in his paper, “The Fixation of Belief” (1877). Adjusting his nomenclature very slightly, if only for the sake of preserving a mnemonic rhyme scheme, we may refer to his four types as Tenacity, Authority, Plausibility (à priori pleasing praiseworthiness), and full-fledged Scientific Inquiry.

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One Response to Tenacity, Authority, Plausibility, Inquiry

  1. Jon Awbrey says:

    Re: Phyllis Chiasson

    “Tenacity” is apt enough for the 1st method, it’s the 3rd method that lacks a succinct term, so I tried using “Plausibility” for that, as suggested by the etymology of plausible and plausive as pleasing, persuasive, or praiseworthy, though perhaps in a specious or superficial way, and in accord with Peirce’s description of the à priori method as adopting “what is agreeable to reason”.

    As far as I can tell from a cursory search, my first use of that series — Tenacity, Authority, Plausibility, Inquiry — was in the following discussion thread on The Wikipedia Review.

    I remember introducing that suggestion on the Peirce List somewhat later on, and naturally some discussion followed. It looks like that occurred at the following locations.

    That was based on the following blog post.

    Hope that helps,

    Jon

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