This edited collection provides the first comprehensive volume on A. J. Ayer's 1936 masterpiece, Language, Truth and Logic. With eleven original chapters the volume reconsiders the historical and philosophical significance of Ayer's work, examining its place in the history of analytic philosophy and its subsequent legacy. Making use of pioneering research in logical empiricism, the contributors explore a wide variety of topics, from ethics, values and religion, to truth, epistemology and philosophy of language. Among the questions discussed are: How did Ayer preserve or distort the views and conceptions of logical empiricists? How are Ayer's arguments different from the ones he aimed at reconstructing? And which aspects of the book were responsible for its immense impact?
The volume expertly places Language, Truth and Logic in the intellectual and socio-cultural history of twentieth-century philosophical thought, providing both introductory and contextual chapters, as well as specific explorations of a variety of topics covering the main themes of the book. Providing important insights of both historical and contemporary significance, this collection is an essential resource for scholars interested in the legacy of the Vienna Circle and its effect on ethics and philosophy of mind.
Adam Tamas Tuboly is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute of Philosophy, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, and a Research Fellow at the PTE-ITD, University of Pécs, Hungary. He has authored numerous papers and edited several volumes on logical empiricism; his research focuses on the philosophy of logical empiricism, logic and modality.
Part I: The Book and its Context.- 1. From Spying to Canonizing: Ayer and his Language, Truth and Logic. Adam Tamas Tuboly.- 2. Language, Truth, and Logic and the Anglophone Reception of the Vienna Circle. Andreas Vrahimis.- 3. 'Viennese Bombshells': Reactions to Language, Truth and Logic from Ayer's Philosophical Contemporaries. Siobhan Chapman.- Part II: Philosophy of Language in LTL.- 4. Ayer on Analyticity. Nicole Rathgeb.- 5. Linguistic Analysis: Ayer and Early Ordinary Language Philosophy. Sally Parker-Ryan.- Part III: Philosophy of Mind and Psychology.- 6. The Evolution of Ayer's Views on the Mind-body Relation. Gergely Ambrus.- 7. A Logical Positivist's Progress: A Puzzle about Other Minds in Early Ayer Resolved. Thomas Uebel.- Part IV: Epistemology and Truth.- 8. Ayer's Verificationism - Dead as a Dodo?. Hans-Johann Glock.- 9. Definition Versus Criterion: Ayer on the Problem of Truth and Validation. László Kocsis.- Part V: Ethics and Values.- 10. Ayer and Berkeley on the Meaning of Ethical and Religious Language. Krisztián Pete.- 11. Ayer's Book of Errors and the Crises of Contemporary Western Culture. Aaron Preston.