1 [mass noun] Excessive adherence to prescribed forms: academic dryness and formalism
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- This inclination has developed the furthest in philosophy, political science, and economics, where most practitioners have adopted an otherworldly and self-referential formalism.
- I am not going to argue for the virtues of formalism.
- Fortunately, I grew out of the spell of legal formalism and its infantile over-simplifications.
1.1The basing of ethics on the form of the moral law without regard to intention or consequences.
- Analytic ethics has been very fairly impoverished given the postivist legacy of emotivism, the formalism of Kantian ethics and the technicalism of utilitarianism.
- They explicitly disavow the classical philosophies of formalism, logicism, Platonism, intuitionism, and social constructivism.
- Gadamer uses Kant's aesthetic formalism to illustrate this point.
1.2Concern or excessive concern with form and technique rather than content in artistic creation.
- Judd's thesis augured the inevitable evolution of Modern art into pure formalism and object-ness.
- In this way, neoclassicism's insistent formalism did little to close the gap between style and meaning.
- A slew of sculptors have emerged in Los Angeles in the last few years, but most seem stuck in either constrictive formalism or murky surrealism.
1.4The treatment of mathematics as a manipulation of meaningless symbols.
- The other basic version of formalism likens the practice of mathematics to a game played with linguistic characters.
- He has also made this formalism more useful for practical calculations.
- Brouwer emphasizes, as he had done in his dissertation, that formalism presupposes contentual mathematics at the metalevel.
2A description of something in formal mathematical or logical terms: there is a formalism which expresses the idea of superposition
More example sentences
- Yet the development of the general theory of relativity introduced Einstein to the power of abstract mathematical formalisms, notably that of tensor calculus.
- The Maximum Likelihood section provides the details of the mathematical formalisms and computations.
- Any attempt to disprove the theory of evolution using thermodynamics will require proper formalisms.
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