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A Realist Conception of Truth by William P. Alston

By William P. Alston

Probably the most vital Anglo-American philosophers of our time right here joins the present philosophical debate concerning the nature of fact. William P. Alston formulates and defends a realist notion of fact, which he calls alethic realism (from "aletheia," Greek for "truth"). this concept holds that the reality worth of an announcement (belief or proposition) is dependent upon no matter if what the assertion is set is because the assertion says it really is. Michael Dummett and Hilary Putnam are of the well-known and greatly influential modern philosophers whose anti-realist rules Alston assaults.

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If they subscribe to a relativist epistemology with the implication that this is all there is, that is, their descriptions of reality are relative to particular and specific time- and space-bound sets of ideas in the world, and if they further accept that it is not possible to make theory- or schema-free observational statements, then reality itself can have no restraining function on how they acquire knowledge of it. This means that there may be a number of different ways of knowing the world and no means of distinguishing between them.

Siraj-Blatchford et al. (2002) in their Effective Provision of Pre-school Education (EPPE) project collected a range of quantitative data about children, their families and their preschool centres in relation to 3,000 aged three children in 141 preschools across England, and then used this data set to identify twelve effective preschool settings for an intensive, in-depth qualitative case study. This type of sequencing can be extended so that a cyclical mix is attempted, and this is where quantitative and qualitative methods are used in a cyclical fashion so that there is a qualitative dimension to the first cycle of research in order to map out the setting.

The first of these is that triangulation assumes a single end point, a correct description of reality, which can be accessed via a number of indirect methods, and that therefore multiple descriptions of the same object are incoherent. The second of these is that if a method or strategy is used, an assumption is made that this can lead to true propositions being produced. However, if another strategy or method is then used to confirm or disconfirm the truth of the first, it would have to have the same truth value, and would therefore be redundant.

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