"LOT2" by Jerry A. Fodor [Book Review]

The Times Literary Supplement 1 (2009)
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In G.K. Chesterton’s The Man who was Thursday, six of the seven anarchists named after different days of the week turn out to be secret policemen. Chesterton’s hero Syme finds himself opposed to not just a disparate group of anarchists, but to the unified forces of authority. A similar thing seems to have happened in recent years to Jerry Fodor. When Fodor published The Language of Thought in 1975 his targets were, as he says, ‘a mixed bag’: reductionists, behaviourists, empiricists, operationalists, holists and various followers of Wittgenstein. But today these disparate targets have become distilled into one movement, which Fodor calls ‘pragmatism’. Fodor sees pragmatism (‘perhaps the worst idea that philosophy ever had’) everywhere, and one aim of this sequel to The Language of Thought is to stamp it out.

Author's Profile

Tim Crane
Central European University


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