Picture Your Favorite Philosopher

Steve Pyke has photographed philosophers. His two online volumes that picture quite a few philosophers from whom I have learned. I was particularly glad to see the likenesses of Arthur Danto, Penelope Maddy, and Daniel Dennett but pictures of my two three four favorite philosophers aren’t in the collection. I think the most glaring omission is Mark Wilson. His book, Wandering Significance: An Essay on Conceptual Behavior, is certainly among the most important philosophical works of the last fifty years and that alone makes him among the most important philosophers in the last fifty years. He also deserves credit for one of the best titles ever given, “There’s a hole in the bucket, Dear Leibniz” (Midwest Studies in Philosophy, 18 [1993], 202-241).
Brian Leiter, among those pictured, tells us, “They’ll be out in book form from OUP in a few months.”
Alphabetizing, often introduces unexpected, if arbitrary, associations. For example, I had to smile at Jacques Derrida being between Daniel Dennett and Michael Dummett. And for a quite different reason, I smiled when I saw Penelope Maddy and David Malament next to each other.

5 thoughts on “Picture Your Favorite Philosopher”

  1. What an amusing title — and the article is obviously about Leibniz’s long and verbose chains of circular reasoning.
    Heck, I don’t even have to read it to know.
    Surely you know the song “There’s a hole in the bucket, Dear Liza”
    ROFL!

  2. Rochelle,
    What you may not know is that in addition to being a great philosopher, Mark Wilson is an expert on what he calls “Hill Billy” music and has produced several CDs by contemporary musicians living in the hills Kentucky and Tennessee. He has also written on it. He loves the stuff.

  3. Aha! That explains it.
    The point about the Hole in the bucket song is that, after many verses, it ends where it starts — hence, ideal for addressing circular reasoning.
    It’s a duet between Liza and Henry. Liza complaining and getting more and more exasperated with giving Henry solutions and Henry’s excuses for why it wont work when all that she wants is a bucket of water and for Henry to “fix it, dear Henry, fix it!”
    That should add to your enjoyment of his article?
    PS: I collected folk music for 40 years.

  4. Wilson’s title actually refers to Newton’s “bucket” argument and the whole question of absolute or relativity motion, one of several issues where Newton and Leibniz differed. So the pun is rather more focused than you might think.

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