1 a strong form of empiricism, esp. as established in the philosophical system of Auguste Comte, that rejects metaphysics and theology as seeking knowledge beyond the scope of experience, and holds that experimental investigation and observation are the only sources of substantial knowledge
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2 (Also called)
legal positivism the jurisprudential doctrine that the legitimacy of a law depends on its being enacted in proper form, rather than on its content
natural law →
3 the quality of being definite, certain, etc.
positivist n, adj
n another name for →
n a philosophical theory that holds to be meaningful only those propositions that can be analysed by the tools of logic into elementary propositions that are either tautological or are empirically verifiable. It therefore rejects metaphysics, theology, and sometimes ethics as meaningless
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