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32. Algebra of the Copula [Version 1]

Charles S. Peirce Indiana University Press PDF


Algebra of the Copula

[Version 1]

Spring 1891

Houghton Library

Logical quantity has but two values, t the true and f the false. But one operation is necessary, defined as follows: a. If b is true, a R b is true. b. Either a or a R b is true. g. If a and a R b are true, b is true.

This gives the following: fRtϭt



t R f ϭ f.

Any proposition written is supposed to be true. In writing propositions parentheses are employed to enclose compounds to be treated as single letters in combining them with letters or other such compounds. These may be called clauses. Parentheses ending clauses or propositions are omitted, and the clauses they would have included are not commonly regarded as such. The last letter of a proposition or clause is called its consequent. Its other immediate parts, letters or clauses, are called antecedents. Thus in the proposition a R [(b R c ) R d R e] R f the antecedents are a and (b R c ) R d R e, and the antecedents of the latter clause are (b R c ) and d.


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4 Erasing Precious: Sapphire and Percival Everett

Lesley Larkin Indiana University Press ePub

Sapphire and Percival Everett

ALICE WALKERS 1982 NOVEL THE COLOR PURPLE WAS A CRITICAL and popular success. Walker won both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award in 1983 and became the face of a new ascendancy of African American women writers that also included Maya Angelou, Toni Cade Bambara, Gayl Jones, Toni Morrison, and Ntozake Shange. The reception of Walker’s novel, however, was not universally positive. Some critics and writers attacked Walker for stereotyping black men as violent, black women as weak, and both as sexually perverse. In a 1984 interview with Reginald Martin, for example, poet and novelist Ishmael Reed described “black feminists, people like Alice Walker” as “‘neoconfederate’ novelists” and compared them to Thomas Dixon, author of The Clansman (the 1905 novel upon which D. W. Griffith based his 1915 film The Birth of a Nation). And literary scholar Trudier Harris praised Walker’s deft handling of vernacular speech in The Color Purple but rejected her central character as an unrealistic – even infuriating – representation of Southern black women: “I couldn’t imagine a Celie living in any black community I knew or any that I could conceive of. What sane black woman, I asked, would sit around and take that crock of shit from all those folks? . . . But the woman just sat there, like a bale of cotton with a vagina . . . waiting for someone to come along and rescue her” (“On The Color Purple” 155).

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The Heat

IU Press Journals Indiana University Press ePub

The Heat

heat has its own inconsistencies

despite purist reputation, own

rag-mop toils steaming iron

blues veins to count before

the big sky’s water breaks;

gets all volcanic eyed, knows better than

still hopes, laughs down to the river

laundry on the head highest

reaches blue furthest point from

up on sweltering rocks evokes

before night rain raise the dead in

the middle black triplets heat cotton-

row conscience juju music spanish

tinge muted horn troubled head

balms mud red barefoot road issues

of tobacco heart old country visions

chewed down traditions tongue ear-

ring future sun-hurt hidden scars up

by the rocks scorching intuition

chain gang arms swing men for cry

before the big sky goes into labor;

tames the pounding heart trumpet

solo raging heat silent screaming

shame burning sugarcane notion

Miles let go of deadly

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15. The Nature of Meaning (Lecture VI)

Edited by the Peirce Edition Project Indiana University Press ePub


MSS 314, 316. [Published in CP 5.151–79 (in part), and in HL, 221–39. This is the sixth Harvard lecture, delivered on 7 May 1903.] Peirce sets out from his concluding claim in Lecture V, that perceptual judgments involve generality. He gives a sustained discussion of the different kinds of reasoning—deduction, induction, and abduction—and discusses other logical conceptions relevant to the question of the nature of meaning. He will use “meaning” technically, he says, to “denote the intended interpretant of a symbol.” He then considers the role of perception in the acquisition of knowledge and the relation of perception to reasoning. Peirce claims that “every single item” of established scientific theory is the result of abduction but that the human faculty of “divining the ways of nature” is not subject to self-control. He argues that perception and abduction shade into one another and claims that pragmatism is the logic of abduction.

Ladies and Gentlemen:

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22. New Elements (Katva aroixela) (1904)

Edited by the Peirce Edition Project Indiana University Press ePub


MS 517. [First published in NEM 4:235–63. This document was most probably written in early 1904, as a preface to an intended book on the foundations of mathematics.] Peirce begins with a discussion of “the Euclidean style” he planned to follow in his book. Euclid’s Elements presuppose an understanding of the logical structure of mathematics (geometry) that Peirce, in his “New Elements,” wants to explicate. Having recently concluded that the scope of logic should be extended to include all of semiotics, Peirce now wants to work out the semiotic principles that he hopes will shed light on the most abstract science. Building on his work in his 1903 “Syllabus,” Peirce deepens his semiotic theory by linking it with the mathematical conception of “degrees of degeneracy.” Symbols are taken to be non-degenerate, genuine, signs, while indices are signs degenerate in the first degree and icons are degenerate in the second degree. Symbols must always involve both indices and icons, and indices must always involve icons. Peirce limits his attention to this trichotomy but carries his discussion deeply into epistemology and metaphysics, making such arresting claims as that “representations have power to cause real facts” and that “there can be no reality which has not the life of a symbol.” Max Fisch described this paper as Peirce’s “best statement so far of his general theory of signs.”

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9. On Science and Natural Classes (1902)

Edited by the Peirce Edition Project Indiana University Press ePub


MS 427. [Published in CP 1.203-37. Written in February 1902, this selection comes from Chapter II of Peirce’s projected book, “Minute Logic.”] In this selection, excerpted from a broader discussion on logic and the classification of sciences, Peirce discusses his theory of natural classes and classification, and presents his conception of science. The problem of natural classes had been of interest to Peirce from early in his career, when he was concerned with distinguishing his views from those of J. S. Mill, but here he refines his views by giving final causation a prominent role in his theory. Natural classes are defined by final causes, though not necessarily by purposes. peirce then characterizes science as “a living thing,” not the collection of “systematized knowledge on the shelves.” Science is what scientists do; it “consists in actually drawing the bow upon truth with intentness in the eye, with energy in the arm.” Peirce argues that the divisions of science that have grown out of its practice are natural classes.

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Charles S. Peirce Indiana University Press PDF


W R I T I N G S OF C H A R L E S S. P E I R C E , 1867-1871

Questions on Reality

MS 148: Winter-Spring 1868

Qu. 1. Whether by the simple contemplation of a cognition, we are enabled in any case to declare with considerable certainty that it is an ultimate premise or cognition not determined by any previous cognition, or whether this is only a hypothesis to be resorted to when the facts cannot be explained by the action of known causes? Ans.

The latter alternative is the true one.

Qu. 2. Whether self-consciousness or our knowledge of ourselves can be accounted for as an inference or whether it is necessary to suppose a peculiar power of immediate self-consciousness? Answer.

It can be accounted for by the action of known causes. Error and ignorance being discovered require the supposition of a self. In short, we can discover ourselves by those limitations which distinguish us from the absolute ego.

Qu. 3. Whether we have the power of accurately distinguishing by simple contemplation without reasoning or combining many circumstances, between what is seen and what is imagined, what is imagined and what is conceived, what is conceived and what is believed, and, in general, between what is known in one mode and what in another? No.

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5 “The Worst of Music”: Listening and Narrative in Night and Day and “The String Quartet”

Adriana L. Varga Indiana University Press ePub

Vanessa Manhire

VIRGINIA WOOLFS ACKNOWLEDGED INTEREST IN INTERDISciplinary approaches to literature, her love of music, and her assumed position as “common listener” rather than musical expert offer fruitful angles into her early fiction: her groundbreaking reworking of narrative conventions depends heavily upon her explorations of the ways in which music works, especially for its listeners.1 Woolf engages directly and critically with the social and literary norms of late nineteenth-century society, placing explicit emphasis on musical scenes as subject matter from which to build this critique, and using music to problematize the relationship between the external world and the world of the mind. This essay discusses Woolf’s treatment of music in her second novel, Night and Day (1919), and the short story “The String Quartet” (1921), focusing on scenes of musical performance as well as Woolf’s questioning of music’s representational capacities. Stylistically, these texts are polar opposites: one heavy, conventional, and Victorian, the other light, experimental, and modernist. Yet in very different ways they both explore music as a potential model for the representation of interiority. Following Pater’s idea of music as embodying the perfect relationship between form and content, Woolf draws on music as a vehicle for the exploration of language. Woolf’s development of stream-of-consciousness narrative techniques, I suggest, owes much to her thinking about the effects of listening to music, a shared social experience but one that simultaneously allows for the individual movement of the imagination.

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2 The War against Fascism

Gerald Sorin Indiana University Press ePub

Four days before the attack on Pearl Harbor, Howard Fast spoke at the annual book fair in Scarborough, Maine, where he was introduced as the “next really important historical novelist.”1 But only a short time after the entrance of the United States into WWII, Fast claimed to have “dismissed” the writing period of his life and to have “moved into the anti-fascist effort with all [his] being.”2 From mid-1942 to early 1944, Fast was certainly more active politically, and even expressed a desire to fight fascism physically; but in that same period, unable to put an “abrupt end” to his enduring ambition to become a successful writer of meaningful and marketable fiction, he also produced two of his most substantial novels, Citizen Tom Paine and Freedom Road.

Howard’s younger brother, Julie, had already enlisted in the armed forces, and Fast, with a very low draft number, waited, thinking he’d be conscripted soon. In the meantime, mainly because of Bette’s anxiety over Howie’s impending military future, the Fasts put the two-bedroom cottage they had built and furnished into the hands of a real-estate agent, and moved back to New York. They never returned to Old Stony Hollow Road in Tarrytown. They searched for a new apartment in the city while they lived in a cheap hotel room, which only added to Bette’s gloom over the loss of her baby. Assuming that Howie would soon be away “for the duration” (a phrase heard often during WWII) and fearing the possibility of years home alone, Bette joined the Signal Corps as a civilian artist making animated training films.3

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Russia and the End of Time

Iain Bamforth Carcanet Press Ltd. PDF

Russia and the End of Time

Natasha’s Dance, the title of Orlando Figes’ brilliant diorama of

Russian culture, in eight thematic chapters from Pushkin to

Stravinsky, derives from a tense scene in Tolstoy’s War and Peace

(). Natasha Rostov, filigree product of the largely French education favoured by the Russian aristocracy, finds herself with her brother in the home of a distant relative who has embraced the ‘narod’ and taken a peasant wife, as many Russian intellectuals were to do after the emancipation of the serfs in . Once the homely meal is finished, ‘Uncle’ strikes up a melody on his guitar, and although Natasha has never learned to dance in the Russian way, this slim, graceful, French-speaking countess finds herself, to her relief and general applause, doing ‘the right thing’. She dances, self-surrendered, with perfect atavistic poise.

Written in the very long shadow cast by the French invasion of

, Tolstoy’s recounting of Natasha’s dance is a fine illustration of his aim to construct a patriotic epic illustrating the fundamental unity of the Russian people. Napoleon’s advance on Moscow, which had been razed on the orders of General Kutuzov to deprive the Grande Armée of provisions (a devastating typhus epidemic was to follow), introduced a new sense of ‘the nation’ based upon the virtues of the common man. The standard European upbringing had corrupted the nobility, many of whom could hardly speak more than a few words of Russian; salvation, if it were to come, could only come, like all things organic, from below.

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Medium 9780253012265


Jennifer M Bean Indiana University Press ePub

Jennifer M. Bean

IN ASKING HOW female screen stars play highly symbolic roles during this period of imperial and industrial modernization, contributors to this section share the conviction that the conjunction of the terms “cinema” and “woman” assume governing status in debates surrounding the transformation of traditional cultures around the world. Each chapter also asks if the “problem of cinema,” to borrow Aaron Gerow’s phrase from part 3 of this volume, is separable from what Joanne Hershfield elsewhere terms the “‘problem’ of women.” In an insightful analysis of early sound film in Mexico, Hershfield observes that “modernity in Mexico was marked by debate and anxiety concerning the rapidly changing role of women in the home and in social and economic spaces, and it is not surprising that the ‘problem’ of women, especially their sexuality, was of major concern to Mexican (male) public intellectuals.”1 While Hershfield’s analysis lingers over the modern Mexican woman as signifier of change and transformation in Santa (Antonio Moreno, 1931), starring Lupita Tovar, it is of particular interest here to note that Mexico’s first film star, Emma Padilla, not only bore an uncanny resemblance to the seductive, sometimes anguished, and often arrogant Italian diva Pina Menichelli but also “copied her mannerisms and gestures.”2 The imitation was hardly coincidental. Padilla’s star status emerged following her performance in La luz (The light; Ezequiel Carrasco, 1917), the second feature-length fiction film produced in Mexico and one that overtly “plagiariz[ed] the popular Italian film Il fuoco (The light; Piero Fosco, 1915), starring Menichelli.”3

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Hell as the Mirror Image of Paradise

Dante Alighieri Indiana University Press ePub

Hell as the Mirror Image of Paradise


The Divine Comedy is a circular poem. Hell only yields its intended message(s) when it is seen as a mirror image of Paradise, when it is understood in terms of what it is not. For Dante, Hell is the least important part of the poem—he would probably have been distressed to know how many people read only Hell. At the very least, Hell must be read within the context of the whole. I will attempt one such reading here in terms of the political or socio-political message of the poem.1 The political propaganda of the Comedy is an aspect which is often ignored by modern critics and readers, though it was obvious to Dante’s earliest commentators. The three large socio-political issues which were important in contemporary political theory—and which are not irrelevant now—are the relation of the individual to society, the relative advantages of smaller and larger political structures (city, kingdom, empire), and the conflict between the church and the secular state.

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1. Read's Theory of Logic

Peirce, Charles S. Indiana University Press PDF

Read's Theory of Logic, 1879


Read's Theory of Logic1

P 148: Nation 28 (3 April 1879): 234-35

This work is the fruit of a travelling scholarship. But in all his travels the author seems never to have come across any modern logic, except in English. Three views, he observes, have been taken of logic; which, if limited to England, is true. Some writers consider it as a study of the operations of the understanding, thus bringing it into close relations with psychology. Others regard it as an analysis of the conditions which must be conformed to in the transformations of verbal expressions in order to avoid the introduction of falsehood.

While others again—our author among them—think the propositions of logic are facts concerning the things reasoned about.

There is certainly this to be said in favor of the last opinion, namely, that the question of the validity of any kind of reasoning is the question how frequently a conclusion of a certain sort will be true when premises of a certain sort are true; and this is a question of fact, of how things are, not of how we think. But, granted that the principles of logic are facts, how do they differ from other facts? For facts, in this view, should separate themselves into two classes, those of which logic itself takes cognizance and those which, if needed, have to be set up in the premises. It is just as if we were to insist that the principles of law were facts; in that case we should have to distinguish between the facts which the court would lay down and those which must be brought out in the testimony. What, then, are the facts which logic permits us to dispense with stating in our premises? Clearly those which may always be taken for granted: namely, those which we cannot consistently doubt, if reasoning is to go on at all; for example, all that is implied in the existence of doubt and of belief, and of the passage from one to the other, of truth and of falsehood,

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6. Pearson’s Grammar of Science (1901)

Edited by the Peirce Edition Project Indiana University Press ePub


P 802: Popular Science Monthly 58 (January 1901):296–06. [Published in CP 8.132–52. The complete title includes the subtitle: “Annotations on the First Three Chapters” (but some remarks are made on the fourth chapter as well). Peirce first wrote this piece for The Psychological Review.] In this review, Peirce objects to Pearson’s claim that human conduct should be regulated by Darwinian theory, and to the related view that social stability is the sole justification of scientific research. Peirce holds that these doctrines lead to bad ethics and bad science. “I must confess that I belong to that class of scallawags who propose, with God’s help, to look the truth in the face, whether doing so be conducive to the interests of society or not.” The man of science should be motivated by the majesty of truth, “as that to which, sooner or later, every knee must bow.” Against Pearson’s nominalistic claim that the rationality inherent in nature owes its origin to the human intellect, Peirce argues that it is the human mind that is determined by the rationality in nature. Peirce also rejects Pearson’s claim that there are first impressions of sense that serve as the starting point of reasoning, and argues that reasoning begins in percepts, which are products of psychical operations involving three kinds of elements: qualities of feelings, reactions, and generalizing elements.

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14. Genius

Robert B. Ray Indiana University Press ePub

Although Emerson famously said of Thoreau that “his biography is in his verses,” he described those verses as “rude and defective,” concluding that Thoreau’s “genius was better than his talent.” Without citing Emerson as the source of this famous judgment, Henry James extended its application to Thoreau’s prose, declaring in 1879 that “whatever question there may be of his talent, there can be none, I think of his genius.… He was imperfect, unfinished, inartistic … ; it is only at his best that he is readable.” Why did Emerson and James arrive at this opinion? What aspects of Thoreau’s writing prompted it?

While any list of writers with more talent than genius will always be a long one, the reverse is not the case. What American writers have had more genius than talent? Whitman? Gertrude Stein? Hart Crane? Thomas Wolfe? Has this imbalance occurred more frequently in America? And is it more common with writers, as opposed to other kinds of artists? We can start to answer these questions by noting that an artist needs to be lucky enough to have a genre available to him that suits his genius. Imagine if Larry Hart had come along before the flowering of the Broadway musical: he would have become, at best, simply a talented light-verse writer, a reduced version of his own ancestor, Heinrich Heine. Had Elvis Presley arrived before rock and roll, he might have developed into a minor version of his idol, Dean Martin, himself a lesser Sinatra. Elvis, of course, helped to invent the genre his genius required, and his ability to do so suggests a way to think about Thoreau and Walden.

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