By Aaron Preston
A singular, serious account of the origins and improvement of the dominant tuition of philosophy within the English-speaking global.
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Additional resources for Analytic Philosophy: The History of an Illusion
For over a century, an unprecedented level of philosophical effort has been given to the development and application of formal logical systems with the intention that they should make our thinking more precise in all content-areas. 17 In other areas, such as metaphysics and the philosophies of language and logic, there indeed may have been advances, but not of the kind that can easily be mapped onto ordinary human concerns. For instance, Scott Soames and Timothy Williamson both point to post-Kripkean understandings of modal and epistemic concepts as among the choicest fruit of AP.
As long as one remains with a few simple, formalizable sentences the idea seems to hold promise. . But there is little evidence in the actual progress of the discussion to encourage such hopes. After eighty years of debate linguistic philosophers are still not agreed on the semantics of simple proper names. How long would it take to construct a semantics of philosophical discourse? (1980: 3–4) Though dated, Sluga’s general point is still applicable: in the philosophy of language and logic, as elsewhere in philosophy, disagreements on basic issues is the norm; thus, inductively, there is little reason to think that continuing to mine this narrow vein will prove so profitable that it should rank as the most important thing philosophers might do with their time and talents.
Biletzki and Matar 1998: xi) The idea that there is a crisis in AP formed the basis for a recent conference at the University of Southampton, where, from 1997 to 2005, there existed a Centre for Post-Analytical Philosophy. For several years, the Centre’s advertisement read: In recent years a feeling has been growing that the analytic tradition in philosophy, once proudly dominant and disdainful of other traditions, has been undergoing a crisis. 19 As with Leiter’s pronouncement on the ‘bogeyman of analytic philosophy’, it is too early to herald the advent of a post-analytic era.