Meaning and method essays in honor of hilary putnam

University of PennsylvaniaB. Hobbies and other interests: Camping, hiking, cooking, languages.

Meaning and method essays in honor of hilary putnam

Life[ edit ] Putnam was born in ChicagoIllinoisin His father, Samuel Putnamwas a scholar of Romance languages, columnist, and translator who wrote for the Daily Workera publication of the American Communist Partyfrom to when he became disillusioned with communism.

The two remained friends—and often intellectual opponents—for the rest of Putnam's life. Putnam's teacher Hans Reichenbach his dissertation supervisor was a leading figure in logical positivismthe dominant school of philosophy of the day; one of Putnam's most consistent positions has been his rejection of logical positivism as self-defeating.

His wife, the philosopher Ruth Anna Putnamtook a teaching position in philosophy at Wellesley College. They had "no idea how to do it [themselves]", in the words of Ruth Anna. They therefore began to study Jewish ritual and Hebrew, and became more Jewishly interested, identified, and active.

InHilary Putnam celebrated a belated Bar Mitzvah service. His wife had a Bat Mitzvah service four years later. In keeping with the family tradition, he was politically active. Putnam was disturbed when he learned from reading the reports of David Halberstam that the U. He said that he had been impressed at first with the PLP's commitment to alliance-building and its willingness to attempt to organize from within the armed forces.

The following year, he was selected as Walter Beverly Pearson Professor of Mathematical Logic, in recognition of his contributions to the philosophy of logic and mathematics.


He continued to be forthright and progressive in his political views, as expressed in the articles "How Not to Solve Ethical Problems" and "Education for Democracy" He retired from teaching in Junebut, as ofhe continued to give a seminar almost yearly at Tel Aviv University. His corpus includes five volumes of collected works, seven books, and more than articles.

Putnam's renewed interest in Judaism inspired him to publish several books and essays on the topic. M stands for mental and P stands for physical.

Meaning and method essays in honor of hilary putnam

It can be seen that more than one P can instantiate one M, but not vice versa. Causal relations between states are represented by the arrows M1 goes to M2, etc. Putnam's best-known work concerns philosophy of mind. His most noted original contributions to that field came in several key papers published in the late s that set out the hypothesis of multiple realizability.

Putnam cited examples from the animal kingdom to illustrate his thesis. He asked whether it was likely that the brain structures of diverse types of animals realize pain, or other mental states, the same way.

If they do not share the same brain structures, they cannot share the same mental states and properties. The answer to this puzzle had to be that mental states were realized by different physical states in different species. Putnam then took his argument a step further, asking about such things as the nervous systems of alien beings, artificially intelligent robots and other silicon-based life forms.

These hypothetical entities, he contended, should not be considered incapable of experiencing pain just because they lack the same neurochemistry as humans.

Putnam concluded that type-identity theorists had been making an "ambitious" and "highly implausible" conjecture which could be disproven with one example of multiple realizability.

He defined the concept in these terms: Therefore, a computer made out of silicon chips and a computer made out of cogs and wheels can be functionally isomorphic but constitutionally diverse.

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Functional isomorphism implies multiple realizability. In fact, there are many functional kinds, such as mousetraps, software and bookshelves, which are multiply realized at the physical level. This formulation, which is now called "machine-state functionalism", was inspired by analogies noted by Putnam and others between the mind and Turing machines.

The point, for functionalism is the nature of the states of the Turing machine. Each state can be defined in terms of its relations to the other states and to the inputs and outputs, and the details of how it accomplishes what it accomplishes and of its material constitution are completely irrelevant.

According to machine-state functionalism, the nature of a mental state is just like the nature of a Turing machine state.

Just as "state one" simply is the state in which, given a particular input, such-and-such happens, so being in pain is the state which disposes one to cry "ouch", become distracted, wonder what the cause is, and so forth.Meaning Functionalism says that understanding the meaning of the word ‘momentum’ is a functional state.

On one version of the view, the functional state can be seen in terms of the role of the word ‘momentum’ itself in thinking, problem solving, planning, etc. Department of Biophysical Sciences, K. NICHOLAS LEIBOVIC Department of Opthalmology, and Center for Cognitive Science, State University of New York at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY , U.

S. A. ([email protected]) George Boolos (ed.), Meaning and Method: Essays in Honor of Hilary Putnam, Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, , ix + pp., $ (cloth), ISBN .

In this festschrift for the eminent philosopher Hilary Putnam, a team of distinguished philosophers write on a broad range of topics and thus reflect the remarkably fertile and provocative research of Putnam himself.

The volume is not merely a celebration of a man, but also a report on the state of philosophy in a number of significant George Boolos.

Tom Weldon, CEO, Penguin Random House meaning and method essays in honor of hilary putnam UK, added: “Allen Lane was central to the success of meaning and method essays in honor of hilary putnam Penguin charles ives essays before a sonata pdf Books and .

Kuhnian Paradigms: On Meaning and Communication Breakdown in Medicine. [REVIEW] Stefan Dragulinescu - - Medicine Studies 2 (4) And They Ain't Outside the Head Either.

Boolos, George, ed. Meaning and Method: Essays in Honor of Hilary Putnam. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press, Boolos presents a series of papers by several of Hilary Putnam’s colleagues and former students.

Michael Devitt, Meanings just ain't in the head - PhilPapers