On the emergence of American analytic philosophy

J. Katzav, K. Vaesen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)
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This paper is concerned with the reasons for the emergence and dominance of analytic philosophy in America. It closely examines the contents of, and changing editors at, The Philosophical Review, and provides a perspective on the contents of other leading philosophy journals. It suggests that analytic philosophy emerged prior to the 1950s in an environment characterized by a rich diversity of approaches to philosophy and that it came to dominate American philosophy at least in part due to its effective promotion by The Philosophical Review’s editors. Our picture of mid-twentieth-century American philosophy is different from existing ones, including those according to which the prominence of analytic philosophy in America was basically a matter of the natural affinity between American philosophy and analytic philosophy and those according to which the political climate at the time was hostile towards non-analytic approaches. Furthermore, our reconstruction suggests a new perspective on the nature of 1950s analytic philosophy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)772-798
Number of pages27
JournalBritish Journal for the History of Philosophy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jul 2017


  • American philosophy
  • Analytic philosophy
  • history of philosophy
  • twentieth-century philosophy


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