The Philosophy of Richard Rorty
Edited by Randall E. Auxier and Lewis Edwin Hahn
Volume 32 in the Library of Living Philosophers
Praise for The Philosophy of Richard Rorty:
"Volume XXXII in 'The Library of Living Philosophers' series, The Philosophy of Richard Rorty is an outstanding compendium consisting of 29 critical essays by analytical philosopher Richard Rorty, as well as his intellectual autobiography, his replies to those who critique him, and a Rorty bibliography. From sharp criticism of the weaknesses of conventional methods of philosophy (especially the excess of preoccupation with questions of the foundation and representation of knowledge), to the invaluable role of pragmatism in everything from surveying language to as an invaluable tool to perpetuate democracy, and much more, The Philosophy of Richard Rorty is a welcome contribution to ongoing intellectual debate. The Philosophy of Richard Rorty is solidly organized and presented, a superb addition to philosophy shelves and a welcome contribution to college libraries."
—Midwest Book Review
The influential philosopher Richard Rorty is the focus of volume 32 in the world-renowned Library of Living Philosophers series. The book includes Rorty's intellectual autobiography, 29 previously unpublished critical and descriptive essays by famous scholars, Rorty's replies to most of the essays, and a complete bibliography of Rorty's published works. Since Rorty passed away in 2007, his contributions to this volume are among the last things he wrote.
Rorty is tremendously important. He transformed the discipline of philosophy during the last quarter of the 20th century, while setting it on a new path for the 21st. In epistemology, the philosophy of language, culture, value, and politics, the impact of his thought is impossible to measure. Having achieved early prominence as a theorist and practitioner of analytic philosophy, Rorty pointed criticism at these accepted pursuits and methods of philosophy, particularly attacking widespread preoccupation with questions of truth, representation, and the foundations of knowledge. For better or worse, Rorty became the center of tremendous controversy, within and beyond the academy. Yet, his critique found its mark, providing a touchstone for numberless others to step into a more open marketplace of ideas. For nearly thirty years, Rorty promoted a new type of philosophical pragmatism with great persuasive power, and many have credited him with creating the renewed interest in the thought of classical American philosophy, especially in his hero John Dewey, with whom Rorty increasingly identified his own aims as his thought matured. Always controversial, Rorty's books and essays were read as carefully by his critics as by his admirers, and it seems that almost everyone holds a strong opinion about his writings, whether positive or negative, with very few thinkers to be found between these extremes. This volume brings together many of Rorty's best critics and supporters for a comprehensive assessment of his achievement and a final defense of the views for which he became so widely known. Rorty devoted some of his final energies to this volume. It stands as his final response to the intellectual world.