ABSTRACT

THE " Gedankenexperimente," upon which so much weight has been laid by Mach l and Heymans,2 had already been investigated by the White Queen,3 who, however, seems to have perceived that the results of such experiments are not always logically valid. The psychological founding of logic appears to be not without analogy with the surprising method of advocates of evolutionary ethics, who expect to discover what is good by inquiring what cannibals have thought good. I sometimes feel inclined to apply the historical method to the multiplication table. I should make a statistical inquiry among school-children, before their pristine wisdom had been biassed by teachers. I should put down their answers as to what 6 times 9 amounts to, I should work out the average of their answers to six places of decimals, and should then decide that, at the present stage of human development, this average is the value of 6 times 9.