Johnson, Alexander Bryan
(1786–1867)
American philosopher of language. Born in England, Johnson emigrated to America in 1801 and had a successful career as a banker. His philosophical interests centred upon language, whose misunderstanding he regarded as responsible for endless confusion and error. In a manner reminiscent of Berkeley he distinguished the ‘sensible’ meaning of terms, tied closely to the experiences to which they refer, from merely ‘verbal’ meaning. The sensible meaning of a sentence is given by what would now be thought of as the verification conditions or assertibility conditions of a sentence. Johnson's conviction that we erroneously attribute extra significance to sentences is a forerunner of the logical positivists’ polemic on the same point. Johnson's principal work was the Treatise on Language (1836). His remark that ‘we can no more exemplify with words that there is a limit to their applicability, than a painter can demonstrate with colours, that there are phenomena that colours cannot delineate’, is a striking anticipation of Wittgenstein's more famous distinction between what can be shown and what can be said.

Philosophy dictionary. . 2011.

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  • Johnson, Alexander Bryan — ▪ American philosopher and semanticist born May 29, 1786, Gosport, Hampshire, Eng. died Sept. 9, 1867, Utica, N.Y., U.S.       British born American philosopher and semanticist who came to the United States as a child of 11 years and made his… …   Universalium

  • Alexander Bryan Johnson — (1786 ndash;1867) was a notable philosopher and banker. Born in Gosport, England, at age 16 he emigrated to the USA. His work was little recognised in his own time, and this remained the case for nearly a century after his death. His work can now …   Wikipedia

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  • Alexander Hamilton Stephens — (* 11. Februar 1812 in oder in der Nähe von Crawfordville, Taliaferro County, Georgia; † 4. März 1883 in Atlanta, Georgia) war ein US amerikanischer Politiker und vom 11. Februar 1861 bis zum 11. Mai 1865 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Alexander Korda Award, BAFTA — British Academy Film Award du meilleur film Les British Academy Film Awards du meilleur film sont décernées par la British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) lors de la cérémonie annuelle des British Academy Film Awards depuis 1948.… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Alexander Korda Awards — British Academy Film Award du meilleur film Les British Academy Film Awards du meilleur film sont décernées par la British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) lors de la cérémonie annuelle des British Academy Film Awards depuis 1948.… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Alexander Korda Awards, BAFTA — British Academy Film Award du meilleur film Les British Academy Film Awards du meilleur film sont décernées par la British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) lors de la cérémonie annuelle des British Academy Film Awards depuis 1948.… …   Wikipédia en Français

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