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The Elusiveness of the OrdinaryStudies in the Possibility of Philosophy$
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Stanley Rosen

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780300091977

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300091977.001.0001

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Moore on Common Sense

Moore on Common Sense

(p.159) Chapter 5 Moore on Common Sense
The Elusiveness of the Ordinary

Stanley Rosen

Yale University Press

This chapter endeavors to clarify the relation between common sense and ordinary language, with special attention to the use of these terms in the approaches to philosophy that are characteristic of G. E. Moore, John Austin, and Paul Grice. The topics of ordinary language and common sense are closely related in one way and quite different in another. A language, by definition, is a set of procedures for constructing intelligible units of communication. Common sense, on the other hand, is a faculty of judgment. The terms “ordinary” and “common,” however, suggest a deeper connection. It is a simple step to the inference that ordinary language is that which is spoken normally or usually within some specified linguistic community, as defined by some particular natural language or languages. An analogous step allows one to infer that common sense belongs to the majority of a designated population, and perhaps to all of its members.

Keywords:   common sense, ordinary language, G. E. Moore, John Austin, Paul Grice

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