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Franz Brentano’s multifaceted vView of induction in empirical and genetic psychology

Andreea Eșanu

pp. 265-278

A topic only marginally addressed in Brentano scholarship is his view (or views) of induction as the proper method of establishing, deriving and verifying psychological laws. Here, I confine my discussion to Psychology from an Empirical Standpoint and Brentano’s genetic psychology (discussed in the first part of his Descriptive Psychology). In both of these accounts, Brentano’s view of induction is empiricist: the laws of empirical/genetic psychology, i. e., of a “very comprehensive universality,” are empirical generalizations derived from and verified only by experience. But genetic psychology is perhaps the most interesting case: its intended reliance on probabilities and statistical verification resembles a science on the right path to progress, with fair control of its uncertainties. Nevertheless, by contrast with more mature mathematized sciences (like classical mechanics), genetic psychology is still a long way behind, due mainly to its insufficient mathematization-a difficulty which, according to Brentano, precludes its deductive closure.

Publication details

DOI: 10.1515/9783110734645-011

Full citation:

Eșanu, A. (2022)., Franz Brentano’s multifaceted vView of induction in empirical and genetic psychology, in I. Tănăsescu, A. Bejinariu, S. Krantz Gabriel & C. Stoenescu (eds.), Brentano and the positive philosophy of Comte and Mill, Berlin, de Gruyter, pp. 265-278.

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