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Encyclopedia > Propositional knowledge

Propositional knowledge or declarative knowledge is knowledge that some proposition is either true or false. This distinguishes propositional knowledge from know-how or procedural knowledge, which is the knowledge of how to perform some task. This article discusses propositional knowledge from a variety of perspectives, including philosophy, science, and history. Knowledge is understanding soemthing or being able to do something. ... Proposition is a term used in logic to describe the content of assertions, content which may be taken as being true or false, and which are a non-linguistic abstraction from the linguistic sentence that constitutes an assertion. ... Procedural knowledge or know-how is the knowledge of how to perform some task. ... Philosophy is a discipline or field of study involving the investigation, analysis, and development of ideas at a general, abstract, or fundamental level. ... // What is science? There are different theories of what science is. ... ...


What is the difference between knowledge and beliefs? A belief is an internal thought or memory which exists in one's mind. Most people accept that for a belief to be knowledge it must be, at least, true and justified. The Gettier problem in philosophy is the question of whether there are any other requirements before a belief can be accepted as knowledge. Look up belief in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Thought or thinking is a mental process which allows beings to model the world, and so to deal with it effectively according to their goals, plans, ends and desires. ... Memory is a function of the brain: the ability to retain information. ... The mind is the term most commonly used to describe the higher functions of the human brain, particularly those of which humans are subjectivel // holaMedia:Example. ... When someone sincerely agrees with an assertion, they might claim that it is the truth. ... Justification can mean: justification (jurisprudence) justification (typesetting) justification (theology) In epistemology, justification of a belief is what renders it worth believing in terms of its probable truth. ... The Gettier problem is a fundamental problem in contemporary epistemology (the philosophy of knowledge), issuing from counterexamples to the definition of knowledge as justified true belief. ...


The article Knowledge (philosophy) discusses the view of philosophers on how one can tell which beliefs constitute actual knowledge. This article or section should include material from Episteme Epistemology (from the Greek words episteme=science and logos=word/speech) is the branch of philosophy that deals with the nature, origin and scope of knowledge. ...

Contents


Acquiring knowledge

People have used many methods to try to gain knowledge.

  1. By reason and logic (perhaps in cooperation with others, using logical argument).
  2. By mathematical proof.
  3. By the scientific method.
  4. By the trial and error method.
  5. By applying an algorithm.
  6. By learning from experience.
  7. By an argument from authority, which could be from religious, literary, political, philosophical or scientific authorities.
  8. By listening to the testimony of witnesses.
  9. By observing the world in its "natural state"; seeing how the world operates without performing any experiments.
  10. By acquiring knowledge that is embedded in one's language, culture, or traditions.
  11. By having a divine illumination or revelation from a divine agency.
  12. By some claimed form of enlightenment following a period of meditation. (For example, the Buddhist enlightenment known as bodhi)
  13. By dialogical enquiry (conversation). See Gadamer, Bohm, Habermas, Freire, on dialogue, learning and knowledge acquisition/negotiation: http://www.infed.org/biblio/b-dialog.htm

This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... Logic (from Classical Greek λόγος (logos), originally meaning the word, or what is spoken, but coming to mean thought or reason) is most often said to be the study of arguments, although the exact definition of logic is a matter of controversy amongst philosophers (see below). ... An argument is an attempt to demonstrate the truth of an assertion called a conclusion, based on the truth of a set of assertions called premises. ... In mathematics, a proof is a demonstration that, given certain axioms, some statement of interest is necessarily true. ... The characterization element can require extended and extensive study, even centuries. ... Trial and error is a method for obtaining knowledge, both propositional knowledge and know-how. ... Flowcharts are often used to represent algorithms. ... This article discusses the general concept of experience. ... An appeal to authority is a type of argument in logic also known as argument from authority, argumentum ad verecundiam (Latin: argument to respect) or ipse dixit (Latin: he himself said it, where an unsupported assertion depends on the asserters credibility). ... In law and in religion, testimony is a solemn attestation as to the truth of a matter. ... This article is about witnesses in law courts. ... Observation basically means watching something and taking note of anything it does. ... Look up Culture on Wiktionary, the free dictionary Wikinews has news related to this article: Culture and entertainment Dictionary of the History of Ideas: Cultural Development in Antiquity Dictionary of the History of Ideas: Culture and Civilization in Modern Times Classificatory system for cultures and civilizations, by Dr. Sam Vaknin... A tradition is a story or a custom that is memorized and passed down from generation to generation, originally without the need for a writing system. ... Divine illumination, or Enlightenment requires a state of grace. ... For information on the last book of the New Testament see the Book of Revelation. ... Meditation refers to any of a wide variety of spiritual practices (and their close secular analogues) which emphasize mental activity or quiescence. ... Bodhi (Pali and Sanskrit. ... Bohm Dialogue or Bohmian Dialogue is a form of free association conducted in groups, with no predefined purpose in mind besides mutual understanding and exploration of human thought. ...

Types of knowledge

Knowledge can be classified into a priori knowledge, which is obtained without needing to observe the world, and a posteriori or empirical knowledge, which is only obtained after observing the world or interacting with it in some way. A priori is a Latin phrase meaning from the former or less literally before experience. In much of the modern Western tradition, the term a priori is considered to mean propositional knowledge that can be had without, or prior to, experience. ... Empirical or a posteriori knowledge is propositional knowledge obtained by experience or sensorial information. ...


Often knowledge is gained by combining or extending other knowledge in various ways. Isaac Newton famously wrote: "If I have seen further... it is by standing on the shoulders of giants". Sir Isaac Newton at 46 in Godfrey Knellers 1689 portrait Sir Isaac Newton, PRS (25 December 1642 (OS) – 20 March 1727 (OS) / 4 January 1643 (NS) – 31 March 1727 (NS) was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, philosopher, and alchemist. ... The metaphor of dwarfs standing on the shoulders of giants can be traced back to Lucan,[cannot be traced to this source. ...


Inferential knowledge is based on reasoning from facts or from other inferential knowledge such as a theory. Such knowledge may or may not be verifiable by observation or testing. For example, all knowledge of the atom is inferential knowledge. The distinction between factual knowledge and inferential knowledge has been explored by the discipline of general semantics. Logic (from Classical Greek λόγος (logos), originally meaning the word, or what is spoken, but coming to mean thought or reason) is most often said to be the study of arguments, although the exact definition of logic is a matter of controversy amongst philosophers (see below). ... Theory has a number of distinct meanings in different fields of knowledge, depending on the context and their methodologies. ... In the context of hardware and software systems, formal verification is the act of proving or disproving the correctness of a system with respect to a certain formal specification or property, using formal methods. ... The words test and testing have many meanings: Testing or experimentation is part of the scientific method, to verify or falsify an already formed expectation with an observation. ... Properties For alternative meanings see atom (disambiguation). ... General Semantics is a school of thought founded by Alfred Korzybski in about 1933 in response to his observations that most people had difficulty defining human and social discussions and problems and could almost never predictably resolve them into elements that were responsive to successful intervention or correction. ...


Knowledge in various disciplines

There are many different disciplines that generate beliefs that can be regarded as knowledge. They include science (which generates scientific theories), law (which generates verdicts), history (which generates history), and maths (which generates proofs).


Knowledge in science and engineering

Scientists attempt to gain knowledge through the scientific method. In this method, scientists start by finding a phenomenon of interest, which generates questions. A scientist then picks a question of interest, and based on previous knowledge, develops a hypothesis. The scientist then designs a controlled experiment which will allow her to test the hypothesis against the real world. She then makes predictions about the outcome of the test, based on the hypothesis. This article is about the profession. ... The characterization element can require extended and extensive study, even centuries. ... From Latin ex- + -periri (akin to periculum attempt). ...


At this point the scientist carries out the experiment, and compares her predictions with her observations. Assuming that there were no flaws in the experiment, then if they match, then this is evidence in favour of the hypothesis. If they do not match, then the hypothesis has been falsified. The next steps are peer review and publication, through which the results are distributed to other scientists. Evidence can mean: Any objectively demonstrable circumstance which tends to indicate or disprove a proposition. ... Falsifiability is an important concept in the philosophy of science that amounts to the apparently paradoxical idea that a proposition or theory cannot be scientific if it does not admit the possibility of it being false. ... Peer review (known as refereeing in some academic fields) is a scholarly process used in the publication of manuscripts and in the awarding of funding for research. ...


A hypothesis that has been shown to accurately and reliably predict and characterize some physical phenomenon, and has been sufficiently peer-reviewed and tested, may become a scientific theory. Scientific theories are widely regarded as knowledge, though they are always subject to further revision or review should new data come to light. In mathematics, theory is used informally to refer to a body of knowledge about mathematics. ...


To use scientific theories, they must be applied to the specific situation in hand. For example, a civil engineer might use the theory of statics (a branch of physics) to determine whether or not a bridge will hold up. This is one case where new knowledge is generated from scientific knowledge by specialising it to an individual instance. The term civil engineer refers to an individual who practices civil engineering. ... Statics is the branch of physics that is concerned with physical systems that are in static equilibrium, that is, in a state where the relative positions of subsystems do not vary over time, or where components and structures are at rest under the action of external forces of equilibrium. ... Since antiquity, people have tried to understand the behavior of matter: why unsupported objects drop to the ground, why different materials have different properties, and so forth. ... Concept B is a specialization of concept A if and only if: every instance of concept B is also an instance of concept A; and there are instances of concept A which are not instances of concept B. For instance, Bird is a specialization of Animal because every bird is...


Knowledge in history

The scientific method does not apply to history (or related disciplines, such as archeology), because it is not possible to construct experiments to test theories. Suppose a historian believes that Napoleon would have won the Battle of Waterloo if Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher had arrived an hour later. The historian cannot simply re-run the battle and see what would happen with different starting conditions. ... Archaeology or sometimes in American English archeology (from the Greek words αρχαίος = ancient and λόγος = word/speech) is the study of human cultures through the recovery, documentation and analysis of material remains, including architecture, artefacts, biofacts, human remains, and landscapes. ... For other uses, see Napoleon (disambiguation). ... Map of the Waterloo campaign The Battle of Waterloo, fought on June 18, 1815, was Napoleon Bonapartes last battle. ... Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher Gebhard Leberecht von Blücher (December 16, 1742 in Rostock (Mecklenburg) - September 12, 1819 in Krieblowitz (Silesia) (now Krobielowice in Poland)), Graf (Count), later elevated to Fürst von Wahlstatt, was a Prussian general who led his army against Napoleon I at the Battle of...


Additionally, the scientific method is essentially the application of the inductive approach to investigation. This approach is entirely appropriate for exploration of the causal world of nature (physics, chemistry, etc.) but not valid for the teleological social sciences, which includes history. There are no constants in human relations, only unmeasurable and inconstant subjective valuations. Electrons always behave the same way under the same conditions, but humans do not -- different people react differently and the same person might react differently at different moments in time. Thus, only spurious inferences can be drawn from repeated observations of human behavior. It might be observed that most humans prefer wealth to poverty or life to death, but it would be invalid to infer any universal law of human behavior from this.


Historians often generate different interpretations of the same event, even when reading the same primary sources, and these interpretations are always subject to revision by other historians. This is because, as a social scientist, the historian must constantly make subjective judgements of relevance in trying to interpret historical events. A primary source is any piece of information that is used for constructing history as an artifact of its times. ... In Parson Weems Fable (1939) Grant Wood takes a sly poke at a traditional hagiographical account of George Washington Historical revisionism is the reexamination of the accepted facts and interpretations of history, with an eye towards updating it with newly discovered, more accurate, and less biased information. ...


Situated knowledge

Knowledge gained in one situation cannot always be relied on in another situation. Imagine two very similar breeds of mushroom, which grow on either side of a mountain, one nutritious, one poisonous. Relying on knowledge from one side of an ecological boundary, after crossing to the other, may lead to starving rather than eating perfectly healthy food near at hand, or to poisoning oneself by mistake.


Some methods of generating knowledge, such as trial and error, or learning from experience, tend to create highly situational knowledge. One of the main benefits of the scientific method is that the theories it generates are much less situational than knowledge gained by other methods. Trial and error is a method for obtaining knowledge, both propositional knowledge and know-how. ... This article discusses the general concept of experience. ... The characterization element can require extended and extensive study, even centuries. ...


Situational knowledge is often embedded in language, culture, or traditions. Critics of cultural imperialism argue that the rise of a global monoculture causes a loss of local knowledge. Cultural imperialism is the practice of promoting the culture or language of one nation in another. ... Monoculture describes systems that have very low diversity. ...


Issues

What constitutes knowledge, certainty and truth are controversial issues. These issues are debated by philosophers, social scientists, and historians. Ludwig Wittgenstein wrote "On Certainty" - aphorisms on these concepts - exploring relationships between knowledge and certainty. A thread of his concern has become an entire field, the philosophy of action. When someone sincerely agrees with an assertion, they are claiming that it is the truth. ... A philosopher is a person devoted to studying and producing results in philosophy. ... Terms like SOSE (Studies of Society & the Environment) not only refer to social sciences but also studies of the environment. ... ... Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein (IPA: ) (April 26, 1889 – April 29, 1951) was an Austrian philosopher who contributed several ground-breaking works to modern philosophy, primarily on the foundations of logic and the philosophy of language. ... Connotatively: an aphorism is a wise saying that bears repetition. ... Philosophy of action is chiefly concerned with human action, intending to distinguish between activity and passivity, voluntary, intentional, culpable and involuntary actions, and related question. ...


There are a number of problems that arise when defining knowledge or truth, including issues with objectivity, adequacy and limits to justification. Beliefs are also very problematic not least because they are either true or false, and therefore cannot be adequately described by conventional logic. An action likewise can be taken or not, but there is the troubling idea of an "event" is, an action taken by nobody, or nobody who you can blame. Logic (from Classical Greek λόγος (logos), originally meaning the word, or what is spoken, but coming to mean thought or reason) is most often said to be the study of arguments, although the exact definition of logic is a matter of controversy amongst philosophers (see below). ...


Non-scientific methods

Some people hold that science does not actually tell us about the physical world that they live. They hold that the world cannot be understood by science, but rather by religious revelations, mystical experience, or literary deconstructionism. The term deconstruction is often used in a loose way as a synonym of critical analysis, especially the kind of uncooperative critical analysis that subjects a work or a text to close scrutiny in order to expose contradictions, poor logic or unwelcome affinities with other works or cultural objects. ...


Practical limits for obtaining knowledge

What we hold to be knowledge is often derived by a combination of reason from either traditional, authoritative, or scientific sources. Many times such knowledge is not verifiable; sometimes the process of testing is prohibitively dangerous or expensive. For instance, some physics theories about the nature of the universe, such as string-theory, require the construction of testing equipment currently beyond our technology. Since such theories are in principle subject to verification or refutation, they are scientific; since they are not proven experimentally, they are not considered certain knowledge. Rather, in such cases we have certain knowledge only of the theory, but not of what the theory describes. Logic (from Classical Greek λόγος (logos), originally meaning the word, or what is spoken, but coming to mean thought or reason) is most often said to be the study of arguments, although the exact definition of logic is a matter of controversy amongst philosophers (see below). ... // What is science? There are different theories of what science is. ...


"Of the three ways in which men think that they acquire knowledge of things—authority, reasoning, and experience—only the last is effective and able to bring peace to the intellect." (Roger Bacon, English alchemist and philosopher) Statue of Roger Bacon in the Oxford University Museum Roger Bacon (c. ... Alchemy is an early protoscientific practice combining elements of chemistry, physics, astrology, art, semiotics, metallurgy, medicine, and mysticism. ... Philosophy is a discipline or field of study involving the investigation, analysis, and development of ideas at a general, abstract, or fundamental level. ...


See also


  Results from FactBites:
 
Knowledge (447 words)
Knowledge includes, but is not limited to, those descriptions, hypotheses, concepts, theories, principles and procedures which to a reasonable degree of certainty are either true or useful.
Knowledge may also be based upon the pronouncements of secular or religious authority such as the state or the church.
Knowledge may also be derived by reason from either traditional, authoritative, or scientific sources or a combination of them and may or may not be verified by resort to observation and testing.
Knowledge (1121 words)
Knowledge is a term with many meanings depending on context, but is as a rule closely related to such concepts as meaning, information, instruction, communication, representation, learning and mental stimulus.
Knowledge may also be claimed for the pronouncements of secular or religious authority such as the state or the church.
Knowledge may also be derived by reason from either traditional, authoritative, or experiential sources or a combination of them.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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