All posts by Marcus Rossberg

About Marcus Rossberg

Editor-in-Chief, Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy; Associate Professor, University of Connecticut

Goodman’s Many Worlds / Review of work on Ramsey

Volume 7.6 of The Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy (JHAP) has now been published online, with full open-access.

It features an article by Alexandre Declos entitled “Goodman’s Many Worlds”. Here is an abstract:

In this paper, I examine Nelson Goodman’s pluriworldism, understood as the claim that there exists a plurality of actual worlds. This proposal has generally been quickly dismissed in the philosophical literature. I argue that we ought to take it more seriously. As I show, many of the prima facie objections to pluriworldism may receive straightforward answers. I also examine in detail Goodman’s argument for the conclusion that there are many worlds and attempt to show how it might be supported. Eventually, I discuss some underexplored challenges to pluriworldism.

The volume also contains a review of Steven Methven, Frank Ramsey and the Realistic Spirit (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), written by Cheryl Misak.

JHAP is a free, open-access peer reviewed journal. It is available at https://jhaponline.org/. Submissions welcome!

Carnap on Analyticity and Existence / Review of work on Quine, Goodman, Popper, and Wittgenstein

Volume 7.5 of The Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy (JHAP) has now been published online, with full open-access.

It features an article by Gary Ebbs entitled “Carnap on Analyticity and Existence: A Clarification, Defense, and Development of Quine’s Reading of Carnap’s Views on Ontology”. Here is an abstract:

Does Carnap’s treatment of philosophical questions about existence, such as “Are there numbers?” and “Are there physical objects?”, depend on his analytic–synthetic distinction? If so, in what way? I answer these questions by clarifying, defending, and developing the reading of Carnap’s paper “Empiricism, Semantics, and Ontology” that W. V. Quine proposes, with little justification or explanation, in his paper “On Carnap’s Views on Ontology”. The primary methodological value of studying Quine’s reading of “Empiricism, Semantics, and Ontology” is that it prompts us to look for, and helps us to see the significance of, passages by Carnap that reveal the logical foundations of his views on ontology. Guided in this way by Quine’s reading, I show that (1) in “Empiricism, Semantics, and Ontology” Carnap’s preferred treatment of philosophical questions relies on paraphrasing them so that their answers are immediately obvious elementary logical truths, and are therefore, by his standards, trivially analytic; and (2) in its most general form, Carnap’s treatment of philosophical questions about existence depends on his controversial view that the analytic truths of a language L may include sentences that are not elementary logical truths, but that are nevertheless, by Carnap’s standards, analytic-in-L simply because we have stipulated that they are to be among the “meaning postulates” of L.

The volume also contains a review of Bredo Johnsen, Righting Epistemology: Hume’s Revolution (New York: Oxford University Press, 2017), written by Matthew Carlson.

JHAP is a free, open-access peer reviewed journal. It is available at https://jhaponline.org/. Submissions welcome!

Verificationism and (Some of) its Discontents

Volume 7.4 of The Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy (JHAP) has now been published online, with full open-access.

It features an article by Thomas Uebel entitled “Verificationism and (Some of) its Discontents”. Here is an abstract:

Verificationism has had a bad press for many years. The view that the meaning of our words is bound up with the discernible difference it would make if what we say, think or write were true or false, nowadays is scorned as “positivist” though it was shared by eminent empiricists and pragmatists. This paper seeks to sort through some of the complexities of what is often portrayed as an unduly simplistic conception. I begin with an overview of its main logical empiricist varieties before considering which aspects of it fall victim to which of the three major types of objection that have been raised against it. I will conclude that what is left standing is a modest proposal that seems worth further investigation.

JHAP is a free, open-access peer reviewed journal. It is available at https://jhaponline.org/. Submissions welcome!

Book Symposium: Wilfrid Sellars and the Foundations of Normativity by Peter Olen

Volume 7.3 of The Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy (JHAP) has now been published online, with full open access.

The contributions included in this volume were originally prepared for an “Author Meets Critics” session on Peter Olen’s book Wilfrid Sellars and the Foundations of Normativity, organized by Carl Sachs for the Eastern Division Meeting of the American Philosophical Association in Savannah, Georgia, on 5th January, 2018.

Table of contents

  1. Catherine Legg: Peter Olen: Wilfrid Sellars and the Foundations of Normativity
  2. David Beisecker: On Peter Olen’s Wilfrid Sellars and the Foundations of Normativity
  3. Mark Lance: Rejecting the pure, but keeping the pragmatics
  4. Peter Olen: Response to Critics

JHAP is a free, open-access peer reviewed journal. It is available at jhaponline.org. Submissions welcome!