Ordinary Language Philosophy

December 10, 2018
Institute of Philosophy, University of Zürich


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In this workshop, we will be concerned with Ordinary Language Philosophy (OLP): the conception of philosophy according to which philosophical problems can be solved or dissolved through the clarification of our ordinary ways of using words. This conception has been held, in various forms, by J. L. Austin, Gilbert Ryle, Peter Strawson, Norman Malcolm and the later Ludwig Wittgenstein, among others. In the last 50 years, OLP has gone out of fashion, but there have been some contemporary attempts to revive it (most notably Hanfling 2000 and Baz 2012).

For this one-day workshop we will be joined by Avner Baz, one of OLP’s contemporary advocates. Avner Baz is Professor of Philosophy at Tufts University and author of two seminal books about OLP and methodology in analytic philosophy in general (When Words Are Called For, 2012; The Crisis of Method in Contemporary Analytic Philosophy, 2017). In these works, he argues against the viability of the so-called ‘method of cases’ for the analysis of concepts like knowledge, truth or causality, and he diagnoses a misconceived picture of language that he claims underlies standard philosophical practice today.

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December 1, 2018, 11:45pm CET

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