Peano’s Reception in the USA. Wilson’s Review of Russell’s Principles

Philosophia Scientiae 25:49-67 (2021)

Abstract

In a review of Russell’s Principles from 1904, Edwin B. Wilson pays great attention to Peano’s work and that of his collaborators. His purpose was to make this work known in the USA where it “unfortunately is very little known and still less appreciated”. Wilson expands Russell’s well-known acknowledgement of Peano’s influence on his own development, seeing in Peano’s logic more than a new “mathematical tool”, describing Peano as a kind of proto-logicist, and defending him from Poincaré’s criticisms. Especially in geometry, he vindicates several priority issues for Peano’s school with respect to Hilbert in the philosophy of the axiomatic method.

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