Context

(Student Guide to World Philosophy)

The title of this book is somewhat misleading: Only two of the fifteen essays are concerned with psychoanalysis. Rather, Wisdom shows that there are certain similarities between the approach of the metaphysician and the approach of the psychoanalyst; he also shows that there are similarities between the approach of the metaphysician and that of the lawyer, or the mathematician, the logician, the scientist, the art critic, or even the novelist. Wisdom’s design, therefore, is really to clarify the term “metaphysics.” He suggests in one place that his task is one of “meta-metaphysics,” that is, one of determining the status of metaphysical problems and metaphysical judgments. The essays are united in their common concern with this problem. They extend in time of publication from 1932 to 1953 and are arranged, roughly, in chronological order. Several are critical book reviews. Only one, the last, appears in print for the first time.