I wonder if a particular philosophical concept/idea/thought experiment has a name. Since I have no idea where to begin with looking it up, can I describe what it's about in a question and expect an answer of "it's called X" or "it doesn't have an official name"?

  • I'd think it's okay if you are asking about a concept you read about in a philosophical text, but not if you ask whether any concept you can think of has a name. Jun 3 '19 at 7:52

As unsatisfactory as it might be, I think the only correct answer here is "it depends".

Generally, I would deem it a kind of reference-request. It should be tagged accordingly. Now, whether it is acceptable or not depends a lot on how the question is worded and framed.

If, for example, you know that you ask for an epistemological or an ethical concept, you can use the corresponding vocabulary in the body of the text and the corresponding tags. Ideally, this includes at least negative references like "similar to the concept X of author Y, but different in the aspects A and B insofar as it is rather like...".

If you lack the knowledge to do so, you should point that out in the body of the question and at least aim for tangible examples in order to give a clear idea of what you are thinking of.

The fuzzier and more confused your own thoughts and wordings and the less tangible comparisons or examples to work with, the more probable it becomes that the question will be closed either for the "personal philosophy"-reason, since the community gets the impression that you want to promote your original idea or the "unclear what you are asking"-reason, since the community members genuinely do not understand what you are talking about.

  • OK, so I should be clear in expressing what I am after, tag appropriately, and, if possible, provide references to what I am talking about. Is that the essence of what I need?
    – VLAZ
    Jun 3 '19 at 10:40
  • 3
    @VLAZ That's what I would say. The votes will show whether the community agrees. In the end, StackExchange has a democratic model. Therefore, it is not on me alone to decide even if they voted me to have slightly more powerful tools for executing the policies of the site, i.e. my standpoint is not necessarily authoritative. Maybe it is worth waiting some hours whether the post is agreed upon via positive votes or other answers are given before posting the question.
    – Philip Klöcking Mod
    Jun 3 '19 at 10:45
  • Thank you. I suspected that might be the answer but I wanted to make sure. I will do a bit of research and post a question later.
    – VLAZ
    Jun 3 '19 at 10:46

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .