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Explaining Realism

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Select from one of the following schools of thought in epistemology or metaphysics:

o Skepticism

o Rationalism

o Empiricism

o Realism

o Idealism

o Materialism

o Determinism

o Libertarianism

· Write a 1,050- to 1,750-word paper describing the concept selected. Include the following in your paper:

o Explain who the main contributors were, and the evolution of how this particular school grew out of the original field of epistemology or metaphysics.

o Provide at least two examples of real-life applications of the chosen field of philosophy.

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Dear Student,
Hello. The solution below, on Realism is based on general knowledge and my own study of Philosophy. Since you did not indicate your current materials and sources, I am not quite certain if the solution below will be course specific enough for you. However, since Realism's general principles are general enough, it should provide you with what you need. Just ensure that your final version also includes discussion points from your current text to make your final paper course-specific. If you h have any questions regarding this solution, please feel free to leave a message via the feedback section and I shall try to update this solution based on that. Good luck and thank you for using Brainmass.

OTA 105878/Xenia Jones

Realism - Beginnings & Concepts

The Age of Enlightenment is that period in time where Philosophy gave birth to a new way of seeking for knowledge. The question, "What is the truth?" rang again and this time Plato's, Aristotle's & Socrates' foundations in Philosophy were adopted, deciphered & given new meaning. Socrates' allegory of the cave became a 'guide' to mathematicians, philosophers and social scientists alike as the discipline of seeking specialized knowledge using what has come to be known as the 'scientific method' took over & gave more credence to logic and reason. It all started with empiricism. To some social scientists, especially during the Enlightenment, empirical studies are the same as positivistic studies. There are 2 main assumptions in empirical thought: 1, that all ideas are via experience and 2, that nothing is true if not experienced. Realism is often traced back, however to Antiquity especially to the ideas of Plato. He proposed that 'universals' - objects and reality exist prior to us and our knowledge of them. Through the ages, varied philosophers have come to interrogate Plato's idea of universals and during the Enlightenment, Realism has come to be re-interpreted by varied philosophers as a perspective from which to interrogate or view reality. Key philosophers from the Middle Ages to the 20th century include William Champeux (same ideas as Plato), St. Thomas Aquinas (universals only exist through God), Rene Descartes (Existence via thought & doubt), Spinoza (existence via time & space), John Locke (all knowledge is via experience), Immanuel Kant (the doctrine of the Thing-in-itself), William James (pluralism), and critical realists Bertrand Russell, G. E. Moore, and C. D. Broad (objects ...

Solution Summary

The solution is a 1,497-word APA format essay discussing and explaining the epistemological theory/position of Realism. Included is a history of Realism discussing the varied contributors (i.e. Locke, Aquinas, James) and thinkers to the epistemology. A personal perspective on the theory is also included using ideas from St. Thomas Aquinas' philosophy and relatable life experience in relation to interrogating reality. A word version of the solution is attached for easy printing. References, both web and print, are listed for expansion.

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