Probability and Evidence
Ayer (A.J.)
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BOOK ABSTRACT:

Back Cover Blurb

  1. Probability and Evidence is based on the second series of John Dewey Lectures which the author delivered at Columbia University in April 1970.
  2. One of the three lectures has been considerably expanded and two further essays have been added.
  3. The lectures begin with a restatement of the problem of induction as Hume posed it. It is then suggested that judgements of probability can be divided into three classes: a priori judgements, statistical judgements, and judgements of credibility; and an attempt is made to show how all three operate.
  4. The problems arising out of a well-known theory of confirmation are then discussed at length. The lectures conclude with an attempt to formulate the conditions under which one proposition may be taken to be good evidence for another.
  5. Of the additional essays, one is a criticism of an ingenious attempt to justify induction on the basis of the calculus of chances; and the other sets out a new interpretation of non-truth-functional conditionals, with an important bearing on the understanding of causality.

Contents
    Preface – ix
  1. Probability and Evidence
    1. The Legacy of Hume – 3
    2. A priori Probability and the Frequency Theory – 27
    3. The Problem of Confirmation – 54
  2. Has Harrod Answered Hume? 89
  3. The Problem of Conditionals – 111
    Index – 141

BOOK COMMENT:

Macmillan Paperback, 1973



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