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Conversations: The Journal Of Cavellian Studies


I first came across Stanley Cavell’s writing in the fall of 1974 in a senior seminar in the philosophy of mind at Middlebury College, co-taught by Stanley Bates and Timothy Gould. We spent most of the term reading Gilbert Ryle’s The Concept of Mind and P. F. Strawson’s Individuals—books that at that time, before the widespread reception of Kripke’s Naming and Necessity, Putnam-style functionalism, and central state identity theory, still counted as contemporary philosophy of mind. It was then felt by Bates and Gould, I conjecture, that something more lively and something having to do with subjectivity might be order. Both of them had been Ph.D. students with Cavell at Harvard, and so we turned to “Knowing and Acknowledging.”


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