Giorgio Castiglione MA

IVC Fellowship sponsored by Vienna Circle Society

 

September 1st - 30th, 2020

Research for a study about:

An Early Bird in Analytic Philosophy? Arthur Pap’s Criticism of the Analytic/Synthetic Dichotomy

Introduction:

Arthur Pap (1921-1959) is an almost unknown figure in twentieth-century thought, usually mentioned for his being the first to use «analytic philosophy» in a book title, thus contributing to the diffusion of such a denomination during the 1950s. After the revival of logical-empiricist epistemology with Friedman’s «dynamics of reason», Stump explored Pap’s contribution to philosophy of science, his functional theory of the a priori. This project aims at investigating a third highly significant development in Pap’s work, i.e. his early and pervasive criticism of the analytic/synthetic dichotomy as held by the members of the Vienna Circle, pointing out the various motives to valorize its theoretical and historical relevance in comparison with the Quinean one. The outcome should be the ascertainment of the great originality of Pap’s work, showing how his conception the distinction – as much as inspired by other philosophers and schools of thought – sets his position somewhere in the middle of a spectrum defined by Carnap’s conventionalism and Quine’s holism, making him a real «missing character» on the analyticity debate scene between the ‘40 and the ‘50.

Report

During my stay as a Fellow at the Institute Vienna Circle, I had the opportunity to develop my research project regarding Arthur Pap’s neglected figure and thought. In particular, my investigation aimed at pointing out the various motives to valorize Pap’s criticism of the analytic/synthetic dichotomy as held by the members of the Vienna Circle, showing its significance in a conceptual and argumentative comparison with the Quinean one. The outcome of this study, which also benefited from consulting Pap’s Archive and Private Library at the Vienna Circle Society, as well as constant discussion with Prof. Friedrich Stadler and Dr. Christoph Limbeck-Lilienau, was a talk delivered on 28th September within the IVC Fellowship Talks series. The draft paper I read in front of the audience might be in the future considered for publication.

Online Lecture

An Early Bird in Analytic Philosophy? Arthur Pap's Criticism of the Analytic/Synthetic Dichotomy

Date: 28/09/2020

Time: 15h00

Venue: Moodle Collaborate

Abstract:

Arthur Pap (1921-1959) is an almost unknown figure in twentieth-century thought, usually mentioned for his being the first to use «analytic philosophy» in a book title, thus contributing to the diffusion of such a denomination during the 1950s. After the revival of logical-empiricist epistemology with Friedman’s «dynamics of reason», Stump explored Pap’s contribution to philosophy of science, his functional theory of the a priori. This project aims at investigating a third highly significant development in Pap’s work, i.e. his early and pervasive criticism of the analytic/synthetic dichotomy as held by the members of the Vienna Circle, pointing out the various motives to valorize its theoretical and historical relevance in comparison with the Quinean one. The outcome should be the ascertainment of the great originality of Pap’s work, showing how his conception the distinction – as much as inspired by other philosophers and schools of thought – sets his position somewhere in the middle of a spectrum defined by Carnap’s conventionalism and Quine’s holism, making him a real «missing character» on the analyticity debate scene between the ‘40 and the ‘50.