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What Philosophers Know: Case Studies in Recent Analytic Philosophy

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Overview

Philosophy has never delivered on its promise to settle the great moral and religious questions of human existence, and even most philosophers conclude that it does not offer an established body of disciplinary knowledge. Gary Gutting challenges this view by examining detailed case studies of recent achievements by analytic philosophers such as Quine, Kripke, Gettier, Lewis, Chalmers, Plantinga, Kuhn, Rawls, and Rorty. He shows that these philosophers have indeed produced a substantial body of disciplinary knowledge, but he challenges many common views about what philosophers have achieved. Topics discussed include the role of argument in philosophy, naturalist and experimentalist challenges to the status of philosophical intuitions, the importance of pre-philosophical convictions, Rawls' method of reflective equilibrium, and Rorty's challenge to the idea of objective philosophical truth. The book offers a lucid survey of recent analytic work and presents a new understanding of philosophy as an important source of knowledge.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'This series of case studies of problems and advances in philosophical thinking argues effectively that philosophy can make progress and that philosophers do have distinctive substantial knowledge. The treatment is excellent: sophisticated and of interest to experts while also clearly-written and engaging for readers generally.' David Sosa, University of Texas at Austin
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521672221
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 5/31/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 264
  • Sales rank: 1,363,479
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Gary Gutting holds the Notre Dame Chair in Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame. His most recent publications include The Cambridge Companion to Foucault, 2nd Edition (2005), Foucault: A Very Short Introduction (2005) and French Philosophy in the Twentieth Century (2001).

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

Part I How Does That Go? The Limits of Philosophical Argument

1 Quine's "Two Dogmas": argument or imagination? 11

2 Argument and intuition in Kripke's Naming and Necessity 31

3 The rise and fall of counterexamples: Gettier, Goldman, and Lewis 51

4 Reflection: pictures, intuitions, and philosophical knowledge 73

Part II Arguments And Convictions

5 Turning the tables: Plantinga and the rise of philosophy of religion 105

6 Materialism and compatibilism: two dogmas of analytic philosophy? 122

7 Was there a Kuhnian revolution? Convictions in the philosophy of science 151

8 Conviction and argument in Rawls' A Theory of Justice 173

Part III Philosophical Truth And Knowledge

9 Rorty against the world: philosophy, truth, and objectivity 197

10 Philosophical knowledge: conclusions and an application 224

References 243

Index 248

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