Letter | Published:

[Letters to Editors]

Nature volume 135, page 232 (09 February 1935) | Download Citation



I AM afraid I neither realise the basis nor appreciate the strength of Mr. Lauwerys' clearly implied prophecy that fruitful developments of biology and psychology—by which I trust he means the study of behaviour, since that is the matter under discussion—depend largely on the acceptance of teleological ideas in general, and the concept of purpose in particular. The issues as they are stated are unfortunately vague, and difficult to discuss in a short space, but if prophecies in these matters are of any value, it seems to me that the futures of these subjects depend only upon the further recognition of sensible problems, capable of investigation, within the fields of objective fact to which they refer. The criterion of objective fact, from the point of view of science, is that it constitutes a datum that is public in the sense defined by Hogben, and is capable of expression without fear of ambiguity.

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