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Peirce’s Puzzle and Logical Sentiment



Heng Cheng

Graduate Institute of Philosophy, National Tsing Hua University

No. 101, Sec. 2, Kuang-Fu Rd., Hsinchu 30013, Taiwan



In 1878, Peirce provided a puzzle concerning both his conception

of probability and under what conditions one is permitted to reason in

accordance with probability; he then offered social sentiment


or logi-

cal sentiment


as solution. Quine and Putnam, two well-known con-

temporary American philosophers, commented upon and interpreted

“Peirce’s puzzle” and his proposed solution. However, their comments

and interpretations are neither illuminating nor faithful, leaving

Peirce’s thought obscure. In this paper, a more credible and faithful

interpretation is suggested with the help of the distinction between

logic and logicality, of the separation of logical sentiment from both

altruistic moral concern and personal interest, and of the derivation of

the contents of Peirce’s three logical sentiments from his conception of


Key Words


Charles S. Peirce, Hilary Putnam, logic, sentiment,