Title | : | **Intro to the Philosophy of Mathematics (Ray Monk)** |

Duration | : | 35:08 |

Viewed | : | 425,244 |

Published | : | 21-08-2016 |

Source | : | Youtube |

A good introduction to the philosophy of mathematics by Ray Monk. He considers the issue of the nature of mathematical truth - what mathematics is actually about - and discusses the views of Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Frege and Russell. What is mathematics about? Is mathematics something discovered or is it something invented or constructed by us? If numbers and mathematical objects are mere mental constructs, something invented by us, then why does mathematics work so well and seem to describe the world? On the other hand, if mathematical entities are "out there" in some sense waiting to be discovered, then what is their status and how do we get knowledge of them? After all, you can't see or touch numbers and other mathematical objects. And unlike ordinary empirical truths, mathematical truths seem to have a quite different and special status: they are a priori, necessary, eternal, universal, and absolutely certain. And this is why from the time of Plato onward, people have regarded mathematical truths as an ideal. In this talk, Ray Monk considers some of the ways in which philosophers have tried to account for the special nature of mathematical truth.

Ray Monk is a British philosopher well known for his writings on Wittgenstein, Bertrand Russell, and the physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer. This talk is part of the Philosophy Cafe series given at the University of Southampton.

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