Willard Van Orman Quine, June 25, 1908 - December 25, 2000

Timeline created by FreyaHolloway
  • Quine at Oberlin and Harvard: Early Influences

    Quine at Oberlin and Harvard: Early Influences
    While studying at Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio, W.V. Quine, at the suggestion of a fellow student, read the "Principica Mathematica," which convinced him to study mathematics as a major, with philosophy of mathematics as his secondary. In 1930, he began his doctorate at Harvard University, where he was supervised by Alfred N. Whitehead, an author of the "Principia Mathematica." He was also introduced to the second author, Bertrand Russel. He achieved his Ph.D. in philosophy in 1932.
  • Logic and Philosophy

    Logic and Philosophy
    During his Junior Fellowship at Harvard, W.V. Quine released his first book, "A System of Logistic (1934)," the published version of his doctoral thesis. In 1937, Quine introduced his heterodox system of set theory, which is known as NF (New Foundations) set theory, the name based on the title of a paper he wrote on the subject. Most of his studies and teachings at this time revolved around logic with a philosophical motivation.
  • "Two Dogmas of Empiricism"

    "Two Dogmas of Empiricism"
    According to philosophy professor, Peter Godfrey-Smith, Quine's paper, "Two Dogmas of Empiricism," is "sometimes regarded as the most important in all of twentieth-century philosophy (Wikipedia)." In the first four of six sections of the paper, Quine argues against analyticity, which is simply the property of being analytic. Below is a link to a video that contains Quine's demonstration of the circularity of analyticity. https://youtu.be/8U873MryWrU
  • Quine at Harvard

    Quine at Harvard
    In 1956, Quine became Egar Pierce Professor of Philosophy at Harvard and retained that post until he retired in 1978.