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Gestalt, Equivalency, and Functional Dependency: Kurt Grelling’s Formal Ontology

  • Arkadiusz ChrudzimskiEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Boston Studies in the Philosophy and History of Science book series (BSPS, volume 273)

Abstract

In his ontological works Kurt Grelling tries to give a rigorous analysis of the foundations of the so-called Gestalt-psychology. Gestalten are peculiar emergent qualities, ontologically dependent on their foundations, but nonetheless non reducible to them. Grelling shows that this concept, as used in psychology and ontology, is often ambiguous. He distinguishes two important meanings in which the word “Gestalt” is used: Gestalten as structural aspects available to transposition and Gestalten as causally self-regulating wholes. Gestalten in the first meaning are, according to Grelling, “equivalence classes of correspondences”, while Gestalten as self-regulating wholes have more to do with relations of ontological dependence. Grelling’s clarification of the concept of Gestalt is doubtless an excellent piece of philosophical analysis, but at the end of the day it turns out that his analysis captures at best only a part of intuitions traditionally connected with the notion of Gestalt.

Keywords

Equivalence Class Ontological Category Figural Moment Tone Sequence Complementary Class 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Notes

Acknowledgments

The work on this paper was supported by the Austrian Foundation for the Promotion of Scientific Research (FWF) and the Foundation for Polish Science (FNP, “Master” programme scheme, directed by Tadeusz Szubka).

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of SzczecinSzczecinPoland

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