David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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In The Historical Turn in Analytic Philosophy. Palgrave Macmillan (2013)
The philosophy of mathematics has long been an important part of philosophy in the analytic tradition, ever since the pioneering works of Frege and Russell. Richard Dedekind was roughly Frege's contemporary, and his contributions to the foundations of mathematics are widely acknowledged as well. The philosophical aspects of those contributions have been received more critically, however. In the present essay, Dedekind's philosophical reception is reconsidered. At the essay’s core lies a comparison of Frege's and Dedekind's legacies, within and outside of analytic philosophy. While the comparison proceeds historically, it is shaped by current philosophical concerns, especially by debates about neo-logicist and neo-structuralist views. In fact, philosophical and historical considerations are intertwined thoroughly, to the benefit of both. The underlying motivation is to rehabilitate Dedekind as a major philosopher of mathematics, in relation, but not necessarily in opposition, to Frege.
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