Reference and Existence: The John Locke Lectures

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9780199928385: Reference and Existence: The John Locke Lectures

"The clarity, openness and, indeed, the honesty of his lectures is impressive, as are the recurring flashes of laconic humor"--Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung"Everything I think about goes back in some way to Kripke and his ideas. For years, many of his legendary lectures have been unavailable -- except in various preprints, difficult-to-read Xeroxes, etc. Now, with the publication by Oxford University Press of the first volume of his collected essays, Philosophical Troubles, and the John Locke Lectures, this problem has been partially remedied. His writing (even though it has often come in part from spoken lectures) is like no other -- equal parts perverse, funny, brilliant, and surprising. I think of him as not so much an heir to Russell and Wittgenstein, but to Poe and Twain."--Errol Morris, Filmmaker "For decades getting a copy of these lectures has been a holy grail for philosophers working on fiction. It is a landmark event to have them now publicly available, where they can get the critical attention--and have the full impact--they deserve. This volume will be essential reading for anyone working on fictional discourse, nonexistence claims, the ontology of fiction, and related issues. It will no doubt be a major influence on work in these areas for decades to come."--Amie Thomasson, Professor of Philosophy, Cooper Fellow, and Parodi Senior Scholar in Philosophy of Art, Department of Philosophy, University of Miami"Saul Kripke's Naming and Necessity is widely acknowledged as one of the most important works of twentieth century philosophy. In his 1973 Locke lectures he develops, extends, and elaborates the ideas in Naming and Necessity in major ways, and replies to potential objections. Rumours of the contents have circulated in the philosophical community, as have samizdat copies of the transcript, but in the absence of an authorized version most people have been reluctant to address the views directly as Kripke's. The publication o


For one thing, Reference and Existence includes many long, substantive footnotes (obviously composed very recently) that demonstrate that in his [Kripke's] seventies he is capable of philosophical thinking of the same high order that made him famous when he was a young man ... I cannot possibly convey, within the scope of this review, the subtlety, richness and beautiful logical coherence of Kripke's treatment of the ontology of fiction. It is a good thing that these superb lectures have finally been published ( Peter Van Inwagen, The Times Literary Suppliment)

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