« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »
a subject which is indicated by every page of Logic in which mind and its operations are mentioned, and which is the touchstone by which the whole truth and scientific value of Logic must ultimately be tested: an inquiry into the constitution and laws of the thinking faculty, such as they are assumed by the Logician as the basis of his deductions. It is not intended as a complete treatise, either on Psychology alone, or on Logic alone; but as an exposition of Psychology in relation to Logic, containing such portions of the former as are absolutely necessary to the vindication and even to the understanding of the latter.
That something of the kind is not altogether unneeded, will be acknowledged by those who are acquainted with the literature of the subject. For a period of seventy years, reckoning from the first publication of Kant's Critique of Pure Reason, Formal Logic, in itself and in its relations to Psychology, has been elaborated by numbers of eminent writers in Germany, from whose labours the English student has, as yet, derived hardly any benefit. Misconceptions are still allowed to prevail concerning the nature and office of Logic, which the slightest acquaintance with the actual constitution of human thought and its laws would suffice to dissipate for ever. Matters treated of by different logicians are alternately expelled from and restored to the province of the science, without the appearance of any thing like a sound canon of criti
cism to determine what is logical and what is not. Attack and defence of the study have been conducted on grounds equally untenable; and a conception of Logic as it might be were the human mind constituted as it is not, is frequently tossed to and fro between contending parties, to the exclusion of Logic as it must be while the human mind is constituted as it is.
In relation to the studies of this University, it is equally necessary to revise and fix exactly our conception of Logical Science, amid the conflicting theories of ancient and modern philosophy. We have recently passed a Statute, enacting, with regard to two successive Examinations, that a proficiency in Logic is to have considerable weight in the distribution of honours. But the present state of logical literature is not such that the mere mention of the subject is sufficient. To say that by Logic is meant what Logic always has meant in the University Statutes, is simply to say that we intentionally ignore all that has been done in modern times for the improvement of the science. To say that we mean Logic in its present acceptation, is to open the floodgates to a host of incongruous and bewildering systems, having nothing in common but the name. To leave the matter to right itself by tradition or custom, is only to correct the deficiencies of our theory by the laxity of our practice. What Logic does our new Statute recommend? Is it Aristotle? is it
the Schoolmen? is it Bacon? is it Aldrich? is it Archbishop Whately? is it Mr. Mill? is it Mr. De Morgan? is it Wolf? is it Kant? is it Hegel? Most of these already exercise some indirect influence on our studies and examinations; and it is merely the want of good translations that saves us from being overwhelmed by an additional mass of incongruities from Germany.
To remedy these evils, present and prospective, there is but one course open to us; -an acknowledged and systematic teaching of Logic from some one definite point of view. The spirit of logical study in this University, after remaining for a considerable time almost in a dormant state, was revived some years back by the publication of Archbishop Whately's Elements, and, ever since that period, has been prosecuted with a good deal of irregular energy. But, though a considerable amount of valuable material has thus been incorporated with the studies of the University, we can hardly be said to have a system; and, without a system, the student of Logic will gain little more advantage from the heterogeneous reading of the present generation than from the stagnation of the last.
Few who are acquainted with the various logical systems of modern times will hesitate to give a decided preference over all others to the formal view of the science, which from the days of Kant has gradually been advancing to perfection. Whether we regard the unity and scientific com
pleteness of the system itself, the great names by which it is supported, the valuable works that might easily be made available for its communication, or the facility with which it might be introduced into the existing course of study, in all it possesses unquestionable advantages, as the basis of logical instruction. But, on the other hand, its compass is small, and its contents, though clear and definite, are, taken by themselves, too meagre to be an adequate substitute for the miscellaneous reading which is at present misnamed Logical. To supply this defect, two courses are open. The study of Formal Logic may be combined either with its objective or with its subjective applications. We may treat, that is to say, a system of Logic, either in connection with some of the various objects of thought to which it may in practice be applied, or in relation to the thinking mind and to that mental philosophy of which it forms a portion. The former method has been abundantly tried, and has abundantly failed in the trial. A system of Logic treated in its objective application has no alternative between an impossible universality or an arbitrary exclusiveness. By whatever right one iota of the matter of thought can claim admission into the system, by the same right the whole universe of human knowledge is entitled to follow. Such a method can only be employed as a bad means of collecting desultory information on
unconnected subjects. As a system, it postulates its own failure.
It is in connection, not in confusion, with cognate sciences, as a branch of mental philosophy, that Logic may and ought to be studied. One of the objects of the present work is to shew that Logic as a science cannot be rightly understood and appreciated, except in relation to Psychology. The neglect of this relation has been acknowledged as the weak side of the Kantian philosophy: its recognition has been imperatively demanded by the ablest modern writers on the subject. "Selon moi," says M. Duval-Jouve," l'objet de la logique n'est pas seulement la direction de l'intelligence, mais encore l'étude de l'intelligence; la direction après l'étude; et un traité de logique doit comprendre la description du fait intellectuel, la théorie de ses lois, l'exposé des règles qu'il doit reconnaître, soit dans son état psychologique et de pure pensée, soit dans sa manifestation par la parole." The propriety of including these psychological matters in a Treatise on Logic may be questioned; but to the necessity of including them in a philosophical course, of which Logic should form a portion, the whole history of the science bears witness. The alliance established of old between Logic and Metaphysics was dissolved by
b See Fries, System der Logik, p. 22.