Philosopher and Logician Saul Kripke’s Obituary at 81
One of the most influential analytic philosophers Saul Kripke’s obituary was revealed after his death at the age of 81 on September 15, 2022.
Kripke was a Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He was also an emeritus professor at Princeton University.
Saul was a central figure in a number of fields related to mathematical logic, philosophy of language, modal logic, metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of mathematics, and recursion theory.
Much of Kripke’s work remains unpublished or exists as tape recordings and privately circulated manuscripts. He made influential and original contributions to logic, especially modal logic.
Kripke received the 2001 Schock Prize in Logic and Philosophy. A 1970 Princeton lecture series, published in book form in 1980 as Naming and Necessity.
It was considered one of the most important philosophical works of the 20th century. This work introduces the concept of names as rigid designators, true in every possible world, as contrasted with descriptions.
It contains Saul’s causal theory of reference, arguing the descriptivist theory found in Gottlob Frege’s concept of sense and mathematician Bertrand Arthur William Russell‘s theory of descriptions.
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Analytic Philosophers Saul Kripke’s Obituary
One of the 20th century’s major figures in philosophy of language and logic Saul Kripke’s obituary has not revealed his cause of death.
Kripke gave a reading of Ludwig Wittgenstein, mostly known as “Kripkenstein”, in his Wittgenstein on Rules and Private Language. This book contains his rule-following argument, a paradox for skepticism about meaning.
He received honorary degrees from the University of Nebraska, Omaha, Johns Hopkins University, University of Haifa, Israel, and the University of Pennsylvania.
Kripke was a member of the American Philosophical Society. He was an elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
He was a Corresponding Fellow of the British Academy in 1985. Saul won the Schock Prize in Logic and Philosophy in 2001.
Kripke tied the knot with philosopher Margaret Gilbert. Kripke is the second cousin once removed of television writer, producer, and director Eric Kripke.
After briefly teaching at Harvard, in 1968 he moved to Rockefeller University in New York City. Kripke took a chaired professorship at Princeton University in 1978.
In 1988 Saul received the university’s Behrman Award for achievement in the humanities. In 2002 he began teaching at the CUNY Graduate Center. The logician was appointed a distinguished professor of philosophy there.
The sad news of Saul Kripke’s death has been received with shock and condolences. Americans also took to Twitter to pay touching tributes to the late philosopher.
Henrik Lagerlund tweeted: “I have very mixed feelings about Kripke. Yes, a great philosopher but a horrible human being with a series of sexual misconduct behind him. I have witnessed it myself and vowed never again to invite him as a speaker.”
Daniel Harris wrote: “RIP Saul Kripke. I first knew of him as an almost-mythical figure, and as the subject of one of my first term papers. To my surprise, he ended up as a colleague and family friend. I feel very lucky to have gotten to know him.”
“RIP legendary philosopher, Saul Kripke. A kind, funny, brilliant man, interested in everything, but whose astonishing contributions to intellectual life came from boring down very deeply into modal logic and other fundamental areas of philosophy. He will be greatly missed,” Tamsin Shaw tweeted.
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