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Philosophy252a Philosophy of Logic and Language (Fall07)


A comparative exploration of alternative paradigms of logic, language and meaning from a logical and philosophical point of view. Special attention is given to the classical Aristotelian grammar of thought and the modern grammars developed by Frege, Wittgenstein (earlier and later phases), Quine, Heidegger, Sommers, Derrida and others. Some attention to paradigms of logic in Eastern meditative traditions. Focus is on the quest for the fundamental logic of natural language.


l) Wittgenstein- Tractatus

2) Wittgenstein - Investigations

3) Sommers- The Logic of Natural Language

4) Sommers - Selected Essays of Types and Categories

5) Quine- Word and Object

6) Frege - Selected Essays

7) Heidegger - Selected Essays

8) Derrida - Selected Essays

Requirements: One short paper on Wittgenstein's Tractatus; an intensive midterm conference based on written responses to comprehensive review questions (primarily on Frege, Wittgenstein and Sommers); an extended research paper (l5-20 pages) on a topic chosen by the student on themes central to the course. Prerequisite: a least one course in philosophy.