[hist-analytic] Analysis and Deflation

Jlsperanza at aol.com Jlsperanza at aol.com
Mon Feb 16 06:52:15 EST 2009


Further to remarks about the place of these 'revolutionaries' -- as I call  
the playgroup led by senior J. L. Austin [b. 1911- he would _not_ admit anyone  
older in the playgroup -- talk of 'bossy'] -- one (me) sometimes hear  
'deflationary' used perhaps in connection to their views. They don't look  
deflationary to me, but a search in the OED brings me face to face with this  quote 
(was this R. Hall?) from a delightful little book by the (as he then  wasn't) 
Vice-Chancellor of Oxford: 

"The contemporary  philosopher's eye 
   is characteristically cold 
   and his pen, perhaps, apt to be employed 
   as an instrument of deflation."
             G.  J. Warnock, English Philosophy since 1900, 1958, p. 173.
 
I see I don't necessarily buy this low-value coin! If anything Grice seems  
to _inflate_ meaning-constitutive utterer's intentions to the _limit_! 
-- Geoffrey James Warnock, born Leeds, 1924, was perhaps one of the  youngest 
in the group. They did have to be 'full-time' (I think) tutors employed  by 
the university to qualify as 'Saturday morningers'. Pears was perhaps  younger, 
though.  Note that Warnock wrote this before he would engage with  Urmson in 
the publication of Austin's philosophical papers that would make a  
_difference_ in the reception of this type of analytic philosophy world-wide  (for who 
subscribes to Arist. Society?) and still before he would edit the Sense  and 
Sensibilia out of the manuscript notes. It seems, following "The strange  death 
of ordinary-language philosophy", it was already dead (with Austin, d.  1960) 
before it was born to, to echo S. Bayne, 'the masses'!
 
-- Cheers,
 
JL
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