Theories And Things
Theories and Things
Here are the most recent writings, some of them unpublished, of the preeminent philosopher of our time. Philosophical reflections on language are brought to bear upon metaphysical and epistemological questions such as these: What does it mean to assume objects, concrete and abstract? How do such assumptions serve science? What is the empirical content of a scientific theory? Further essays deal with meaning, moral values, analytical philosophy and its history, metaphor, the nature of mathematics; several are concerned with logic; and there are essays on individual philosophers. The volume concludes with some general reflections on the contemporary scene and two playful pieces on the Times Atlas and H. L. Mencken. Quine is always, whatever his subject, an elegant writer, witty, precise, and forceful. Admirers of his earlier books will welcome this new volume.
This is a book to be savored, with a little something for a surprisingly wide variety of tastes. Here is Quine on the marvels of The Times Atlas, the virtues and vices of Mencken's The American Language, the mixed blessings that result from flush times for academia, and the bleariness of Mortimer Adler's vision of philosophy. Of course, Quine's more...