Thesis on the open boat

Enthusiastic about nature, the sea and photography. His relationship with the ocean began 40 years ago. He joined our team in 2010: without hesitating he stepped aboard and left his small fishing boat with which he dazzled the tourists visiting grottoes. Since then, he became our skipper and no one knows the coastal secrets or enjoys the north wind as much as he does! He knows the region through his feet, for he is also a hiking guide. He is fluent in Portuguese, English, French, German and Spanish. His experience with the sea, nature and life is a reference to all of us.

Sections 5 and 7 will describe a few possible reasons for a fallibilist to regard your belief that 2 + 2 = 4 as being fallible. In the meantime, we need only note schematically how F* would accommodate those possible reasons. The basic approach would be as follows. Although your belief that 2 + 2 = 4 cannot be false (once it is present), your supposed justification for it is fallible. This could be so in a few ways. For a start, maybe you are merely repeating by rote something you were told many years ago by a somewhat unreliable school teacher. (Imagine the teacher having been poor at making accurate claims within most other areas of mathematics. Even with respect to the elements of mathematics about which she was accurate, she might have been merely repeating by rote what she had been told by her own early — and similarly unreliable — teachers.) The fallibility of memory is also relevant: over the years, one forgets much. Still, your current belief that 2 + 2 = 4 seems accurate. And it need not be present only because of your fallible memory of what your fallible teacher told you. Suppose that you are now very sophisticated in your mathematical thinking: in particular, your justification for your belief that 2 + 2 = 4 is purely mathematical in content. That justification involves clever representation, via precisely defined symbols, of abstract ideas. Nevertheless, even such purely mathematical reasoning can mislead you (no matter that it has not done so on this occasion). Really proving that 2 + 2 = 4 is quite difficult; and when people are seeking to grasp and to implement such proofs, human fallibility may readily intrude. Actual attempts to establish mathematical truths need not always lead to accurate or true beliefs.

What can Man do when faced with a Universe that has no sympathy for him? How can we survive alone against nature? As the characters in the story come to realize, our only hope is in our sympathy and concern for other human beings. The fact is most fully realized in the character of the correspondent. Crane tells us that he had been taught to be cynical of men, but his shared tragedy with the other three men on the boat forced him to form a comradeship that goes beyond mere associations. As Crane tells us, "there was this comradeship that the correspondent, for instance, who had been taught to be cyni cal of men, knew even at the time was the best experience of his life." A metamorphosis is undergone when he and the other men realize that all they have is each other. The correspondent, recalling a childhood verse, feels sympathy for a dying soldier, one who does not even exist: "The correspondent, plying the oars and dreaming of the slow and slower movements of the lips of the soldier, was moved by a profound and perfectly impersonal comprehension. He was sorry for the soldier of the Legion who lay dying in Algiers." Being in his current situation, the correspondent can finally understand the pathos of the dying soldier. He knows what it is like to be alone in a cruel world, and more importantly, he realizes he doesn't have to be alone. "It was no longer merely a picture of a few throes in the breast of a poet, meanwhile drinking tea and warming his feet at the grate; it was an actuality--stern, mournful, and fine." He now understands what it is to be human: that constant striving in the face of futility, and that need for others that ultimately none of us can deny.

Thesis on the open boat

thesis on the open boat


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