Companion to W.V.O. Quine
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This Companion brings together a team of leading figures in contemporary philosophy to provide an in-depth exposition and analysis of Quine’s extensive influence across philosophy’s many subfields, highlighting the breadth of his work, and revealing his continued significance today.

  • Provides an in-depth account and analysis of W.V.O. Quine’s contribution to American Philosophy, and his position as one of the late twentieth-century’s most influential analytic philosophers
  • Brings together newly-commissioned essays by leading figures within contemporary philosophy
  • Covers Quine’s work across philosophy of logic, philosophy of language, ontology and metaphysics, epistemology, and more
  • Explores his work in relation to the origins of analytic philosophy in America, and to the history of philosophy more broadly
  • Highlights the breadth of Quine’s work across the discipline, and demonstrates the continuing influence of his work within the philosophical community


Gilbert Harman is James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor of Philosophy at Princeton University. He has written broadly about W.V.O. Quine’s philosophy, and much of his research shows Quine’s influence, including Thought (1973), Change in View (1986) and Reasoning, Meaning, and Mind (1999). He is also editor of Semantics of Natural Language (with Donald Davidson, 1970) and The Logic of Grammar (1975). 

Ernie Lepore is an American philosopher and cognitive scientist. He is currently Acting Director of the Rutgers Center for Cognitive Science, and a professor at Rutgers University. He is the co-author with Herman Cappelen of Insensitive Semantics (Wiley-Blackwell, 2004) and Language Turned on Itself (2007). He is editor of TheOxfordHandbook of Philosophy of Language (with Barry C. Smith, 2006) and general editor of the Wiley-Blackwell series Philosophers and Their Critics.


Notes on Contributors ix

Introduction: Life and Work 1
Gilbert Harman and Ernie Lepore

Part I Method 15

1 Quine and Epistemology 17
Thomas Kelly

2 Quine and the A Priori 38
Lars Bergström

3 Quine and Pragmatism 54
Peter Godfrey-Smith

4 Quine's Relationship with Analytic Philosophy 69
Gary Kemp

5 Quine on Paraphrase and Regimentation 89
Adam Sennet and Tyrus Fisher

6 Quine's Naturalism 114
Alan Weir

7 Quine's Naturalism Revisited 148
Peter Hylton

Part II Language 163

8 Inscrutability Scrutinized 165
Alex Orenstein

9 Quine on the Analytic/Synthetic Distinction 181
Gillian Russell

10 Quine, Analyticity, and Transcendence 203
Ernie Lepore

11 Indeterminacy, Relativity, and Behaviorism 219
Gilbert Harman

12 Indeterminacy of Translation 236
Peter Pagin

13 Developments in Quine's Behaviorism 263
Dagfinn Føllesdal

Part III Logic, Mathematics, Science 279

14 Quine's Philosophy of Logic and Mathematics 281
John P. Burgess

15 Bolzano, Quine, and Logical Truth 296
Sandra Lapointe

16 Quine on Observationality 313
Olav Gjelsvik

17 Observation 333
Bredo C. Johnsen

18 Quine on Evidence 350
Robert Sinclair

19 Quine on Reference and Quantification 373
Michael Glanzberg

Part IV Relation to Other Philosophers 401

20 Quine and Russell 403
Gary Ostertag

21 The Place of Quine in Analytic Philosophy 432
Scott Soames

22 Quine's Naturalistic Explication of Carnap's Logic of Science 465
Gary Ebbs

23 Quine and Chomsky on the Ins and Outs of Language 483
Barry C. Smith

24 Quine's Conception of Explication – and Why It Isn't Carnap's 508
Martin Gustafsson

25 The Relation between Quine and Davidson 526
Hans-Johann Glock

26 Quine and the Revival of Metaphysics 552
Gideon Rosen

Name Index 571

Subject Index 576


“Recommended. Graduate students and researchers/faculty.”  (Choice, 1 May 2015)

"A splendid collection, offering newcomers entry to Quine's challenging corpus and experts a rich reference work. Sure to catalyze scholarship for years to come."

—Bernhard Nickel, Harvard University

“This superbly organized and remarkably comprehensive Companion contains authoritative, lucid papers on Quine's philosophy, methodology, and relation to other philosophers. It is an absolutely invaluable resource for students and specialists alike.”

—Robin Jeshion, University of Southern California

“Here is a wealth of new and insightful material on one of the twentieth century's greatest philosophers. It shows convincingly that Quine has more to teach us now.”

—Richard Creath, Arizona State University