Neurath’s Decisionism and the Earliest Reviews of Logical Empiricism

In: Rationality and Decision Making
Author: Artur Koterski

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Logical empiricists from the Vienna Circle explicitly referred to French conventionalism in their Manifesto (1929), as well as in many much earlier publications. Conventionalism, while it was construed differently by Schlick or Carnap, belonged to the core of this empiricist tradition on equal footing with Mach’s legacy. Surprisingly, however, a weighty part of criticism that neo-positivism met with already in the first reviews by Ingarden, Popper, and Weinberg, concerns the alleged “absolutism” of their methodological prescriptions. It is argued herewith that the case of Neurath’s decisionism, a view that he adopted long before the emergence of logical positivism, strongly disaffirms this “received interpretation”.