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Introducing the Stephen Boydstun Corner


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#1 Michael Stuart Kelly

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Posted 12 June 2009 - 12:22 PM

Introducing the Stephen Boydstun Corner

I have had this corner on my mind for the longest time, but I have not had the time to properly deal with the consequences. Still, the best way to start something is to start. So I wrote to Stephen and told him what I was thinking. I am more than pleased to say that he accepted.

Stephen has an impressive body of work, but it is a bit scattered, thus often difficult to access. He has a site for Objectivity (a link to which I keep on the Portal page), but that is difficult to research for many people and quotes need to be copied by retyping.

So I thought having a Stephen Boydstun Corner on OL would be a good thing since it carries a lot of targeted traffic of people who are likely to gain value from his writing.

As with all other Corners of Insight, this in no way reflects on Stephen agreeing with anything other than things like the normal posting guidelines that apply to everybody. That includes agreeing with me. His mind is his own. Anyway, my idea is to expand with people of good will, not restrict.

I have taken so long to do this because my time is really limited and I wanted to contribute more than I can. But I think Stephen will manage nicely and I will help out as much as I can in moving stuff around, being available for technical matters, etc. I have attributed him with moderator powers for his corner.

There are three reasons why I consider this corner to be particularly valuable:

1. Stephen is one of the few people on earth at the present who has published an academic periodical on Objectivism-related subjects.

2. In his work, he sees Objectivism through the lens of great academic learning. His familiarity with philosophical and scientific technical material is overwhelming at times. At least to me it is. And he applies this knowledge to Objectivist theories and concepts, and vice-versa.

3. He has wonderful reading suggestions in philosophy and science. I believe having them (and his comments) in one place is of high value to many, especially those who like to educate themselves.

On a personal note, I have difficulty keeping up with some of his writing since I do not read technical stuff very quickly. It takes time that I often don't have to make sure I understand properly. So I am glad there is now a central place bearing his work that should be easy to research before too long. I can easily go back to review the things I missed.

In a time of terrible things happening in this world, a bit of sunshine is always welcome. Setting up the Stephen Boydstun Corner is one such sunny day for me.

Michael

Know thyself...


#2 James Heaps-Nelson

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Posted 12 June 2009 - 01:19 PM

Introducing the Stephen Boydstun Corner

I have had this corner on my mind for the longest time, but I have not had the time to properly deal with the consequences. Still, the best way to start something is to start. So I wrote to Stephen and told him what I was thinking. I am more than pleased to say that he accepted.

Stephen has an impressive body of work, but it is a bit scattered, thus often difficult to access. He has a site for Objectivity (a link to which I keep on the Portal page), but that is difficult to research for many people and quotes need to be copied by retyping.

So I thought having a Stephen Boydstun Corner on OL would be a good thing since it carries a lot of targeted traffic of people who are likely to gain value from his writing.

As with all other Corners of Insight, this in no way reflects on Stephen agreeing with anything other than things like the normal posting guidelines that apply to everybody. That includes agreeing with me. His mind is his own. Anyway, my idea is to expand with people of good will, not restrict.

I have taken so long to do this because my time is really limited and I wanted to contribute more than I can. But I think Stephen will manage nicely and I will help out as much as I can in moving stuff around, being available for technical matters, etc. I have attributed him with moderator powers for his corner.

There are three reasons why I consider this corner to be particularly valuable:

1. Stephen is one of the few people on earth at the present who has published an academic periodical on Objectivism-related subjects.

2. In his work, he sees Objectivism through the lens of great academic learning. His familiarity with philosophical and scientific technical material is overwhelming at times. At least to me it is. And he applies this knowledge to Objectivist theories and concepts, and vice-versa.

3. He has wonderful reading suggestions in philosophy and science. I believe having them (and his comments) in one place is of high value to many, especially those who like to educate themselves.

On a personal note, I have difficulty keeping up with some of his writing since I do not read technical stuff very quickly. It takes time that I often don't have to make sure I understand properly. So I am glad there is now a central place bearing his work that should be easy to research before too long. I can easily go back to review the things I missed.

In a time of terrible things happening in this world, a bit of sunshine is always welcome. Setting up the Stephen Boydstun Corner is one such sunny day for me.

Michael


Michael, Thank you for doing this. Stephen is one of the bright lights in our movement.

Jim

#3 Stephen Boydstun

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Posted 26 November 2009 - 10:44 AM

Thank you, Kat and Michael, for the Objectivist Living forum. Thank you, Michael, for giving me the Corner. The setup for this sector has proven to be a way for me to do and communicate extended philosophical studies, while drawing together, in an integrated, systematic form, writing I have done on internet forums since beginning my internet communications about four years ago. Jim, thanks.

The Corner has provided a platform and incentive for producing serious new work. I take note of the maximum average number of distinct readers for threads by dividing the number of reads by the number of posts (plus the initial post and collapsing the count for posts I partitioned, but effectively posted at the same time). There are enough readers-plus-return-reads to make the considerable effort worthwhile.

It seems a little peculiar to thank my readers, but, well, let me say I am glad you are interested in and follow my work. The last few weeks, I have been working on the next posts in the Peirce thread; these will take us deeply into philosophy of perception, anti-foundationalism, philosophy of science, and perhaps some metaphysics. The threads Rand’s Morality of Life; Philosophy of Logic; and Chance in Physics will be extended, as I have promised. That ethics one should include Schopenhauer, perhaps Spencer, Nietzsche and Guyau (an integration and extension of my previous work for SOLO), and perhaps Bergson. Among further installments in the philosophy-of-logic thread will be discussion of Peikoff’s old paper “Aristotle’s Intuitive Induction.” The thread on chance in physics will eventually include interpretations of quantum mechanics. I expect to recast my old thread Mathematics in Science and execute its promised continuation, though now as a new thread in my Corner; I want to discuss the use of mathematics in astronomy and in theory of the rainbow abreast each other across ancient, medieval, and modern times. This will include a close treatment of Aristotle’s conceptions of science and the use of mathematics in it, conceptions to be refined, then radically reformed. I expect to execute the with-measurement program in this Corner as we go, as far as we go.

It is partly sunny and mild this Thanksgiving Day in Lynchburg. A fine apple pie (always from scratch) has just come out of the oven. Our new home and grounds continue to be our paradise. Long life is good, with enough health and memory.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

7/14/13 - Follow-On



#4 Michael E. Marotta

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Posted 17 December 2009 - 02:26 PM

He has a site for Objectivity (a link to which I keep on the Portal page), but that is difficult to research for many people and quotes need to be copied by retyping.


Actually, I did not find it on the Portal Page. It was easy enough to find "boydstun objectivity" via a search engine and I printed a couple of pages to put into my Ayn Rand folder (manilla folder; on the shelf with the Ayn Rand books). His work deserves the widest possible attention, certainly among Objectivist, for whom the basic principles can be assumed, and from which discussion can advance.

I say thee yea, Steve Boydstun.

Mike M.
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#5 Kat

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Posted 14 November 2010 - 08:15 AM

Here is an index of his work. This is also available on his profile page.

 

Objectivity

Objectivity Archive
Subject Index Key

"Universals and Measurement"
I. Orientation
II. Analysis – Affordance of Ratio or Interval Measures

II. Analysis – Affordance of Ordinal Measures / Superordinates and Similarity Classes / Amended Measure-Definitions of Similarity and Concepts

III. Genesis – Elaboration of Identity / First Words, First Universals / Analytic Constraint

Notes

References
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Comments on III. ABC
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
– Piece-Wise Ordinal / Entity Measure / Category Theory
– Abstractions / Particulars / Themes
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Judgments and Measurement"

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

"Capturing Concepts"
Introduction
I. Categorical Perception
II. Reference and Specification
III. Measure and Matter
IV. Abstraction
V. Identity and Definition
References
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Follow-up

– Proper-Noun Concepts

– Definite Concept and Phrase-Length
– The Concept Thought
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Capturing Quantity" – 12, 3

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

"Randian Axioms and Postulates in Metaphysics"
Basics / Identity with Measurement
I. Exclusions of Non-Contradiction: Entities
. . .Part 1 – Identity as to Kind
. . .Part 2 – Identity as to Particularity
II. Exclusions of Non-Contradiction: Actions
III. Exclusions of Non-Contradiction: Attributes
. . .Part 1 – Locke
. . .Part 2 – Leibniz I
. . .Part 3 –
. . .Part 4 –

Metaphysics and Life
– There Is and I Am
– Your Love of Existence
– Thought's Living Existence

– Beauty, Goodness, Life

 

Philosophy of Perception

– Sensory Qualities: Their Relation to Sensory System and World
– Primary/Secondary Qualities
– Peirce on Perception and Conception
– Perception and Objectivity (& Supplement)
– Object and Content

Intuition
"Peirce contra Intuition and Self-Evidence"
. . .Introduction
. . .I. Anselm of Canterbury
. . .II. Roger Bacon
. . .–––Avicenna
. . .–––Neoplatonists
. . .–––Plato

Logic
– Origin of 'A is A' Formula
– Between False, Invalid, and Meaningless
– Meaningless Tautology
– Normativity of Logic – Kant v. Rand
– Normativity of Logic - Robert Hanna
– Predication on Identity
– Contradiction with the Individual Concrete
– Identity Manifold
– Philosophy of Logic
– Modal Logic
– Quantum Logic
– Why Be Logical?
– Epistemology and Logic

 

Integration

From Integrity to Calculus

Integration in Rand – from integrity to calculus

to Piaget, Montessori, and Helmholtz

 

Theory of Truth

Objectivist Theory of Truth

“Perception and Truth – Kant and Rand”

. . I. Sense and Mind – Rand

. . II. Empirical Realism – Kant ABCD, E

. . III. Empirical Judgment – Kant and Rand A, B, C, D, E

"Truth of Geometry"

. . .Part 1 – Aristotle
. . .Part 2 – Locke and Leibniz
. . .Part 3 – Kant, Precritical
. . .Part 4 – Kant, Critical (forthcoming)
"Analytic-Synthetic Distinction"
. . .Part 1 – Quine
. . .Part 2 – White and Rand-Peikoff
. . .Part 3 – Objective Analyticity

Change and Causality
– Induction and Causality
– Causal Power of Attributes
– Inhering, yet Causing
– Rand's Law of Causality without Uniqueness
– Identity to Causality / Meyerson / Ockham
– Ontology of Time
– Gradients and Drivers
– Types of Cause

"Induction on Identity"
Introduction
I. Varieties of Induction
II. Ockham – Contingency
III. Nicolaus – Experience of Substance
IV. Nicolaus – Reasoning to Substance
V. Hume – Experience of Cause and Effect
VI. Hume – Reasoning to Cause or Effect
VII. Hume – Necessity
VIII. Hume – Uniformity
IX. Existence is Identity

"Volitional Synapses"
Conscious Controls / Psychoneural Relation
Hypothetical Necessity
Physical and Organic Determinism / Deterministic Error

Ayn Rand Society 2007
– Foundations of Ethics: Objectivism and Analytic Philosophy – Irfan Khawaja
– Addendum to My Comment – Concerning Nozick 2001
– Concerning Paul Bloomfield's Comment

Mathematics in Science
– Functions of Mathematical Description in Astronomy and Optics, Illustrations from Antiquity
– Angular Momentum and Causation
– Rainbows –
Aristotle
Ibn Sahl
Ibn al-Haytham / Qutb al-Din al-Shirazi / Kamal al-Din al-Farisi / Roger Bacon
—Theodoric of Freiberg AB

Philosophy of Science
– Between Realism and Constructive Empiricism
– Thomas Kuhn

Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics
– Transactional Interpretation

"Space, Rotation, Relativity"
I. Descartes / Huygens
II. Newton / Leibniz
III. Kant
IV. Ampere / Faraday / Maxwell / Einstein

Scientific Cosmology
– Copernican Revolution and Significance
– Universe as a Concrete
– Totality Referent
– General Relativity and Cosmology – ab
– Einstein Online
– Total Angular Momentum of Universe
– By Microwave and Radio
– Endless Existence – ab
– Roger Penrose – Cycles of Time

Kant
Metaphysics of Kant and Rand
– Space, Rotation, Relativity – Kant
– Kant and Principia
– Kant from A to Bxxx (&)
– Mysticism – Kant and Rand
– Categories
"Kant's Wrestle with Happiness and Life"
. . .Part 1 – to 1781
. . .Part 2 – towards 1785
. . .Part 3 – into 1785
. . .Part 4 – Moral Worth, Necessary and Free – AB

– Dewey and Peikoff on Kant's Responsibility

Nietzsche v. Rand
– Your Moral Ideal
– Claiming Nobility
– Parallels and Influence
"Truth of Will and Value"
. . .Part 1 – Before Zarathustra
. . .Part 2 – Zarathustra and Beyond
. . .––––––– Rand 1929–38 ABC
. . .––––––– Rand 1938–46 ABCDE
. . .––––––– Rand in Full

Rand and Biology
– Rand's Concept of Biology Part 1 / Part 2
– Reservation on Evolution
– Scientific within Rational
– Vegetative Robots and Value

Rational Egoism
– Function of Mind
– Function of Ethics
– A Rejection of Egoism
– Supported Choice to Live
– Desire to Value
– Altruism
– Sacrifice
– Value Out There
– Visibility, Benevolence, and Egoism – ab

Ayn Rand
– Original, True, Important
– To Think
– Blok
– Universals
– Three Treasures
– Rejection
– Objectivist Label – ab
– Soul, Structure, Struggle


Edited by Stephen Boydstun, 19 December 2013 - 07:55 PM.


#6 Stephen Boydstun

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 08:12 AM

2012sumS_zpsc437444e.jpg



#7 Michael E. Marotta

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 08:35 AM

Still handsome after all these years.


Mike M.
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#8 daunce lynam

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 08:43 AM

Irresistibly. Is that Walden Woods in the background?

#9 Stephen Boydstun

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 04:12 PM

Yes, Carol. Blue-Ridge Walden.

 

One reader recently asked if there is a best order in which to read my compositions in epistemology. It may be useful to share what I suggested to him, the following order of threads in this Corner:

 

Capturing Concepts
....Introduction
....I. Categorical Perception
....II. Reference and Specification
....III. Measure and Matter
....IV. Abstraction
....V. Identity and Definition
......References
 

Capturing Quantity – 123

 

Universals and Measurement

. . I. Orientation

. . II.A  Analysis – Affordance of Ratio- or Interval-Measures
. . II.B  Analysis – Affordance of Ordinal Measures
. . II.C  Analysis – Superordinates and Similarity Classes

. . II.D  Analysis – Amended Measure-Definitions of Similarity and Concepts

. . II.E  Analysis – Conclusion of Core Task

. . III.   Genesis

. . III.A  Genesis – Elaboration of Identity

. . III.B  Genesis – First Words, First Universals

. . III.C  Genesis – Analytic Constraint

. . . Notes

. . . References

 

Judgments and Measurement

....Predication with Identity

....Predication with Measurment

....Appendix on Hypothetical Judgments

 

Theory of Truth
....Truth of Geometry
. . ..Part 1 – Aristotle
. . ..Part 2 – Locke and Leibniz
. . ..Part 3 – Kant, Precritical
. . ..Part 4 – Kant, Critical (deferred to forthcoming book)

....Perception and Truth – Kant and Rand

. . ..I. Sense and Mind – Rand

. . ..II. Empirical Realism – Kant ABCDE

. . ..III. Empirical Judgment – Kant and Rand ABC, DE

....Objectivist Theory of Truth

....Analytic-Synthetic Distinction
. . ..Part 1 – Quine
. . ..Part 2 – White and Rand-Peikoff
. . ..Part 3 – Objective Analyticity

. . ..Part 4 – Aristotole to Abelard (deferred to forthcoming book)

 

Philosophy of Logic

....Normativity of Logic – Kant v. Rand
....Normativity of Logic – Robert Hanna
....Between False, Invalid, and Meaningless
....Meaningless Tautology

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PS

I forgot to include, which could come before those under Theory of Truth:

 

Peirce – Perception and Conception

 

Peirce contra Intuition and Self-Evidence

....Introduction

....I. – Anselm of Canterbury

....II.A – Roger Bacon (Avicenna)

....II.B – Roger Bacon (Plotinus)

....II.C – Roger Bacon (Plato)

....II.D – Roger Bacon (himself, in limbo)






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