[hist-analytic] Clarity Is Not Enough

Jlsperanza at aol.com Jlsperanza at aol.com
Sun Feb 15 23:55:09 EST 2009

What a volume. Still unable to check the  original contents. But 
contributors, with closure, appear to be:

H. H.  Price
Wykeham professor of Logic, Oxford. b. Wales. "Clarity is not enough"  
(originally PAS, 1945).

C. D. Broad
Professor of Philosophy, Cambridge  -- views cited by Grice, 'Personal 

Brand  Blanshard

Willard Van Orman Quine
Professor of Philosophy, Harvard --  visited Grice/Strawson while in Oxford,
but won't let pass one opportunity to  publish his views against Austin!

William Calvert Kneale
Are necessary  truths true by convention. Apparently his paper is.
Which is good, to  elaborate what Poincare was meaning!

A. C. Ewing
Professor of  Philosophy, Cambridge.

Max Black
Son of a British expatriate diplomat  in Russia. Very intelligent. Will 
publish on
"Grice on meaning" -- later  criticised by Martinich: "Black on Grice on 
Meaning", Dialectica.

Peter  Heath, 
Professor of Philosophy, Bristol? -- wrote on Alice in  Wonderland.
Apparently, born in Italy! (Firenze)

E. E.  Harris

C. A  Campbell

W. F. R. Hardie
Grice's tutor --  lovingly recollected in "The life and opinions of Paul 
Grice". I wish all tutors  were so lovingly recollected as Hardie was. Hardie 
taught Grice many things,  like to play golf. He was only tutor at Corpus Christi, 
were Grice was the  undergrad. Besides Hardying, Grice joined the Pelicans -- 
the Corpus Christi  football team; he also found time to edit the undergrad 
philo magazine, called,  'The Pelican'. Urmson published in "The Pelican" a 
review of Hardie's book ever:  Aristotle's Ethical Theory.

C. K. Grant
Excellent author. Obscure.  Wrote "Pragmatic Implication" for _Philosophy_. 
Taught at Durham, I think.  

J. N. Findlay
South-African born philosopher. Very witty.

Sir  Stuart Newton Hampshire,
born Lincolnshire -- did attend some of the  'playgroup' meetings, but not a 
lot (he wanted to 'move on'). Was a member of an  earlier playgroup that met 
at Berlin's rooms in All Souls, before the war -- see  Berlin, "Austin and the 
early beginnings of Oxford philosophy", in "Essays on  Austin", ed. Fann. 
Discussed with Grice methodological issues of 'analytic  philosophy' or 
'linguistic philosophy' in APA symposiums. Married to Nancy  Cartwright whom she met at 

H. D. Lewis

A. J.  Ayer
'enfant terrible' of Oxford during the 1930s, attended playgroup  meetings 
with Austin, Ayer, McNabb, etc in All Souls with Berlin. Left Oxford  for 
London, where he became Grote professor of the philosophy of mind. Came back  to 
Oxford with a vengeance to become Wkyeham professor of Logic. Charming fellow  -- 
and verificationist to the day of his death!


Another  thing to consider,

Price, "Clarity is not enough" -----  implicature:
but it _is_ necessary.

Post-modern reaction:
"Clarity is not enough,  _nor_ necessary": 'leave the student with the 
obscurities he wants to  keep'.

If my account is too much 'student-centred', it should not be.  

I do not think Price is thinking that _clarity_ *is*  necessary/sufficient 
analysis of a concept. But I would think that is what  people like Grice would 
think it is.

When Grice attempts analysis of 'I',  he however notes:

"Critics may think my analysis is wrong since it hardly  _clarifies_ on a 
pretty intuitive notion such as "I", in fact, provides an  analysans which is so 
long that it reeks of _wrong_. But I think this objection  is too silly to be 
taken seriously. Now the next..."

Finally, Austin's  rebuke reconsidered (PAS, 1956) -- repr. in Philosophical  

"[Granted], clarity [may] be not enough; 

but, perhaps, it  will be time to go into this 

when [and if -- JLS] 

we are within  measurable distance of achieving
clarity on some matter."

So perhaps  it's not fair to see Austin's playing with 'excuses' here, 
because the man was  not really directing his efforts to _clarity_ there: it was a 
brainstorm  session, as it were, meant to show the complexity of the problems 
and the thorny  terrain to be dealing with.

I think Austin wanting to be 'achieving  clarity on some matter' is when he 
analyses, say, a speech act into
the  locutionary act proper  --  phatic
from the perlocutionary effect
and the illocutionary  force.

That he was _not_ within measurable distance, poor chap, has been  shown 
inter alii by Cohen ("Do illocutionary forces exist") and in a grand  manner by D. 
Holdcroft (of Leeds), "Problems in the theory of speech  acts".

I would think his sense and sensibilia is perhaps not too  constructive or 
theory-constructive. But I think there is a book by Grahame,  which considers 
all of Austin's substantive views on issues such as 'knowledge',  'free will', 
'action', 'meaning', 'perception', etc. that shows that in the long  run, he 
did contribute to something like philosophical theory. Of course one  has, as R. 
B. Jones has, to read him sympathetically. And not like Ayer, who  wrote, 
"Has Austin refuted the theory of sense data?" with the wrong  implicature: "Nay 
-- only confused it for us a bit  further"!



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