Donald Davidson: Life and Words

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2012-09-24
  • Publisher: Routledge

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Donald Davidson (1917-2004) was one of the most prominent philosophers of the second half of the twentieth century. His thinking about language, mind, and epistemology has shaped the views of several generations of philosophers. The present book brings together articles by a host of prominent contemporary philosophers to provide new interpretations of Davidson's key ideas about meaning, language and thought. The book opens with short commemorative pieces by Marcia Cavell, Richard Rorty and Tyler Burge who give us glimpses of the life of a great philosopher, a beloved husband, colleague and teacher. The article by Lepore and Ludwig and the ensuing heated debate with Fredrick Stoutland on how to interpret Davidson show why Davidson's legacy has become a disputed intellectual territory. The articles by James Higginbotham, Peter Pagin, Kathrin Gler, Barry Smith and Bill Child, all eminent philosophers of language, are prime examples of one strand in this legacy. The article by Sophie Gibbs gives us an opening to Davidson's enormous contribution to philosophy of mind. The book closes with a piece by Davidson, first published in 1995, where he brings together the various strands of his work in a Unified Theory of speech and action. This book was originally published as a special issue of the International Journal of Philosophical Studies.

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