Piaget's basic objective is seen as an attempt to explain how the individual and his evolutionary forbears can collectively gain practical mental‐models of the “real world”—starting ultimately from nothing, and without independent assistance. This paper firstly sets out to clarify Piaget's rather abstract views on this matter by postulating a more detailed mechanistic basis for them, and then interpreting various observations in terms of the hypothetical mechanisms. (This analytical approach is thus primarily intended as a heuristic aid; though it is also shown to be prima facie compatible with some other, non‐Piagetian paradigms.) It is concluded that a useful way of summarizing the process is in terms of the combined operations of preference for “internal closure” within the brain (Internal Coherence or consistency), and preference for “external closure” during interaction with the environment (Pragmatism or experimentation). In the light of this, Part II briefly discusses the views of Tarski, Popper and the Operationalists/Behaviourists concerning the nature of truth and the legitimacy of reductionism into unobservable domains.
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