Analytic philosophy and the later Wittgensteinian Tradition

Paolo Tripodi’s book Analytic Philosophy and the Later Wittgensteinian Tradition has just been published by Palgrave Macmillan in the History of Analytic Philosophy series edited by Mike Beaney.

Here is the cover:


And here the back cover:

This book aims to explain the decline of the later Wittgensteinian tradition in analytic philosophy during the second half of the twentieth century. Throughout the 1950s, Oxford was the center of analytic philosophy and Wittgenstein – the later Wittgenstein – the most influential contemporary thinker within that philosophical tradition. Wittgenstein’s methods and ideas were widely accepted, with everything seeming to point to the Wittgensteinian paradigm having a similar impact on the philosophical scenes of all English speaking countries. However, this was not to be the case. By the 1980s, albeit still important, Wittgenstein was considered as a somewhat marginal thinker. What occurred within the history of analytic philosophy to produce such a decline?

This book expertly traces the early reception of Wittgenstein in the United States, the shift in the humanities to a tradition rooted in the natural sciences, and the economic crisis of the mid-1970s, to reveal the factors that contributed to the eventual hostility towards the later Wittgensteinian tradition.


The book uses both traditional methods of the history of philosophy, such as conceptual and contextual analysis, and quantitative methods: for example, chapter 3 (“Carnapstein in America”) and chapter 5 (“Science, Philosophy, and the Mind”) provide and interpret data concerning the presence and role of Wittgenstein in the full-text of The Journal of Philosophy and The Philosophical Review from 1921 to 1970; chapter 7 (“Concluding Remarks. The Last Decades”) briefly discusses the results of Bonino and Tripodi’s just published article on “Academic Success in America: Analytic Philosophy and the Decline of Wittgenstein”, and it also presents and analyses some data included in the Web of Science citation indexes by applying co-citation tools (in particular, within the sub-corpus of the articles in which Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations are cited, co-citation analysis indicates the number of times in which other works are cited together with the Investigations during the period 1986–2015); chapter 2 (“The Core and the Periphery”) briefly discusses Franco Moretti‘s application of Wallerstein’s core-periphery model to literary history, and it also reflects on its possible applications to the history of philosophy.

This entry was posted in Distant Reading, Franco Moretti, History of analytic philosophy, History of philosophy, Quantitative methods, Uncategorized, Wittgenstein. Bookmark the permalink.

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