A System of Logic, Ratiocinative and Inductive, being a connected view of the principles of evidence and the methods of scientific investigation…
Mill, John Stuart.

New York: Harper and Brothers… 1846. First American edition of Mill’s greatest work, and his first book publication in America. Crown of spine reinforced with matching cloth tape, edges of boards rubbed, lightly foxed as usual, intermittent light marginal dampstaining. Still, a good, tight copy of an uncommon book. Contemporary dark brown blindstamped cloth, gilt lettering and publisher’s device on spine. xii, 593, [1, blank], [2 (Item ID: 11751)


A System of Logic is “The first major installment of his comprehensive restatement of an empiricist and utilitarian position. It presents…a fairly complete outline of what would now be called an ‘empiricist’ epistemology…It begins the attack on ‘intuitionism’ which Mill carried on throughout his life, and it makes plain his belief that social planning and political action should rely primarily on scientific knowledge, not on authority, custom, revelation, or prescription… With the publication of the Logic, Mill took a major step toward showing that the philosophy of experience, which had hitherto been identified primarily as a skeptical position, could offer at least as much in the way of constructive thinking as any other kind of view…Mill held that the philosophy of experience was more likely than any other to encourage the development of society along liberal lines. He therefore held that it was a matter of considerable importance to show that empiricism was a viable alternative to the less progressive views—notably, Scottish common-sense philosophy and German idealism—which were then dominant. The Logic succeeded in doing this” (J.B. Schneewind, writing in the Encyclopedia of Philosophy).

Schumpeter, p. 450.

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