Origins of the logical theory of probability: von Kries, Wittgenstein, Waismann

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Abstract:

The physiologist and neo-Kantian philosopher Johannes von Kries (1853-1928) wrote one of the most philosophically important works on the foundation of probability after P.S. Laplace and before the First World War, his Principien der Wohrscheinlich-keitsrechnung (1886, repr. 1927). In this book, von Kries developed a highly original interpretation of probability, which maintains it to be both logical and objectively physical. After presenting his approach I shall pursue the influence it had on Ludwig Wittgenstein and Friedrich Waismann. It seems that von Kries's approach had more potential than recognized in his time and that putting Waismann's and Wittgenstein's early work in a von Kries perspective is able to shed light on the notion of an elementary proposition.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02698590120059040

Publication date: July 1, 2001

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