H.G. Callaway, context for meaning and analysis: A critical study in the philosophy of language [Book Review]

Erkenntnis 46 (3):401-405 (1997)
Abstract
Context is mainly a critical history of one of the central strands – arguably, the central strand – of the analytic tradition in philosophy, namely, the philosophy of language. Key figures that put in an appearance include Frege, Russell, Wittgenstein, Carnap, Ayer, Hempel, Tarski, Quine, Davidson, Putnam, and Dewey, the last being a somewhat odd figure, given the general tenor of Callaway’s cavalcade of stars. Meaning and analysis are the focus of attention, and true to his title, Callaway doesn’t hesitate to criticize various positions as he makes his way – the book is organized more or less chronologically – from Frege to Davidson and Putnam. More than that, though, he doesn’t content himself with merely negative criticism. Original positions on various issues are argued for and integrated into an approach that’s largely inspired by Quine, but also pays a large tribute to Davidson and Dewey.
Keywords H.G. Callaway  semantic contextualism  American philosophy
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