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Contemporary Philosophy: A Second Look

BERNARD WILLIAMS


Subject Philosophy

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631219088.2002.00005.x


Extract

Given the title of John Searle's essay, this second introduction might have been expected to complement the first geographically, by dealing with present philosophical developments in places other than the United States, but this is not in fact what it will try to do. Philosophy in the United States, in other English-speaking parts of the world, and in many other countries as well, is now very largely the same. In these places, there is one philosophical culture, and inasmuch as it contains different approaches, and some of the philosophy that is done within that culture is distinct from ‘analytical’ philosophy, that itself is not a matter of geographical region. It is true that ‘analytical’ philosophy, the style of philosophy described in Searle's essay and overwhelmingly represented in this volume, is often professionally distinguished (in job advertisements, for instance) from ‘continental’ philosophy, and this does represent, in a clumsy way, something which until recently was true: that the ways in which philosophy was done in France, Germany and other countries of continental Europe were typically different from the ‘analytical’ style. To a much more limited extent, that remains so. ( Chapter 40 , chapter 41 , chapter 42 describe the situation in continental Europe.) However, it is absurd to mark philosophical differences with these two labels. Apart from involving a strange ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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