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12 Modern Philosophers

Christopher Belshaw, Gary Kemp

ISBN: 978-1-405-15261-7 February 2009 Wiley-Blackwell 264 Pages


Featuring essays from leading philosophical scholars, 12 Modern Philosophers explores the works, origins, and influences of twelve of the most important late 20th Century philosophers working in the analytic tradition.

  • Draws on essays from well-known scholars, including Thomas Baldwin, Catherine Wilson, Adrian Moore and Lori Gruen
  • Locates the authors and their oeuvre within the context of the discipline as a whole
  • Considers how contemporary philosophy both draws from, and contributes to, the broader intellectual and cultural milieu

Acknowledgments vi

Notes on Contributors vii

Introduction Christopher Belshaw and Gary Kemp 1

1 Quine A. W. Moore 16

2 Rawls Thomas Baldwin 34

3 Davidson Ernie Lepore and Kirk Ludwig 54

4 Williams Catherine Wilson 76

5 Rorty Alan Malachowski 94

6 Fodor José Luis Bermúdez 115

7 Nagel Sonia Sedivy 134

8 Kripke Alexander Bird 153

9 Nozick A. R. Lacey 173

10 Parfit Jacob Ross 192

11 McDowell Marie McGinn 216

12 Singer Lori Gruen 232

Index 251

"The 12 essays by 12 different authors are clear and concise; they offer both summaries and critiques that give valuable guidance to those who are new to the writings of these thinkers." (CHOICE, 2009)

“It is recommended not only to readers not yet familiar with philosophical discourse and concerns, but also to 'insiders' who wish to get a clearer view of the various debates and discussions that are taking place in philosophy today.” (Metapsychology, August 2009)

"This book was a superb idea and has been superbly done." Brad Hooker, University of Reading


"This engaging collection of incisive and lucid essays on twelve major contemporary contributors to the subject elegantly delivers a synoptic view that, in making this work readily comprehensible to the non-specialist without a hint of oversimplification, shows philosophy for what it is at its best: enlivening, stimulating, exacting, and – true to the promise of its Socratic origins – ever capable of provocatively unsettling the otherwise unexamined presumptions that would blind us to life’s absorbing complexities. Informative, illuminating reading." Garry L. Hagberg, University of East Anglia

  • Brings together a collection of profiles on current and recent philosophers working in the analytic tradition
  • Philosophers covred include Quine, Davidson, Rorty, Kripke, Nozick, Rawls, Williams, Nagel, Parfit, Singer, Fodor, Searle, McDowell, Putnam and Dummett
  • The team of international contributors are themselves established and well-known philosophers
  • Goes beyond many introductions to analytic philosophy by exploring a broad range of figures and a spectrum of their work, rtaher than focusing on a single text