<history of philosophy, biography> American philosopher born in 1931; author of Consequences of Pragmatism (1982) and Contingency, Irony, and Solidarity (1989). Extolling the critical work of Dewey, Heidegger, and Wittgenstein, Rorty attacked the foundationalist presumptions of traditional epistemology in Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature (1979), proposing instead a postmodern conception of philosophical method as edifying discourse. Rorty's philosophical papers are collected in Objectivity, Relativism, and Truth, Essays on Heidegger and Others, and Truth and Progress. Recommended Reading: Richard Rorty, Philosophy and Social Hope (Penguin, 2000); Reading Rorty: Critical Responses to Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature and Beyond, ed. by Alan Malachowski (Blackwell, 1990); Rorty & Pragmatism: The Philosopher Responds to His Critics, ed. by Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr. (Vanderbilt, 1995); Rorty: And His Critics, ed. by Robert B. Brandom (Blackwell, 2000); David L. Hall, Richard Rorty: Prophet and Poet of the New Pragmatism (SUNY, 1994); Recovering Pragmatism's Voice: The Classical Tradition, Rorty, and the Philosophy of Communication, ed. by Lenore Langsdorf and Andrew R. Smith (SUNY, 1995); and Rorty, ed. by Matthew Festenstein and Simon Thompson (Polity, 2001).
[A Dictionary of Philosophical Terms and Names]
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