By Morton Gabriel White
Even supposing an exceptional many memoirs are being released nowadays, this autobiography through Morton White has unique value simply because specialist philosophers seldom write their memoirs and, once they do, they not often produce books as attractive as this one. As historian of principles and a thinker, White is ready to situate his existence within the deeper and broader highbrow currents of his time, and consequently the tale of his studies at Columbia, Harvard, and the Institute for complex examine is a brilliantly conceived contribution to the historical past of yank philosophy within the 20th century. Readers interested by the improvement of upper schooling could be fascinated with White's description of the struggles over faith at Harvard within the Fifties, whereas historians of city lifestyles should be a lot drawn to his shiny account of his boyhood at the reduce East facet of latest York. and scholars of pragmatism will study a lot concerning the twentieth-century assault at the contrast among analytic and artificial statements from a letter written to White via the Polish truth seeker Alfred Tarski, and from the three-way correspondence of Nelson Goodman, W. V. Quine, and White reproduced in an appendix. The author's dialogue of his touch with such influential thinkers as John Dewey, G. E. Moore, and Isaiah Berlin, and particularly his wide correspondence with Berlin, will additional increase the book's entice a vast viewers. certainly, White's autobiography should still allure extra realization one of the trained public than any booklet written through an American thinker in lots of years.--Peter H. Hare, SUNY unique provider Professor of Philosophy and Editor, Transactions of the C. S. Peirce Society: A Quarterly magazine in American Philosophy.
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Extra info for A Philosopher's Story
John's needs were greater than mine, so I didn't get the fellowship. I can well remember a long conversation with the philosopher William Barrett, then an assistant at Chicago, about the cost of living in Chicago, so there was probably a moment when I thought the thing was in the bag. Later I suspected—probably wrongly—that a hostile review of Mortimer Adler's Art and Prudence that I published in a radical students' magazine edited by Jimmy Wechsler might have had something to do with my failure to get that fellowship.
She was a good friend of my friends Robert Snyder and George Justin, both of whom became movie producers. George, in spite of his mocking remarks about the logicians' “p implies q,” would audit Nagel's and Schapiro's lectures and would join me and my philosophical friends in discussions of just about everything. Another of my nonacademic friends was Fred Tropp. I came to know Fred when I was a camp counselor at Camp Swago in the Poconos, where I had gotten a job in the summer of 1936. Fred agreed to rent a room with me on Morningside Heights in the fall of 1939 because he wanted to live closer to northern New Jersey, where he had taken a job as a chemist in a paint factory.
In 1936 Herb was on the faculty of the Columbia Law School, teaching, as I recall, criminal law and federal jurisdiction. Many of my former City College classmates went to his lectures and were enthusiastic about them. This pleased me greatly, since, as I have indicated, Herb was my great model. However, my ability to follow him was questionable, for here I was, only seven or eight years younger than he, and an impoverished graduate student, while he was already a luminary on the Columbia faculty, ensconced in a posh office in Kent Hall.