To the Editor:Shapiro is well known among Peirce scholars as editor of the five-volume series Peirce Seminar Papers (1993–2002) and author of numerous works on linguistics and semiotics.
Having taught at Brown for 16 years, including a course on Charles Sanders Peirce, the modern founder of sign theory, I found Steven Johnson's essay to be a depressingly accurate characterization of the academic times during his college years. However, readers should know that his identification of semiotics as a field of study by linking it with Peirce, an American philosopher, and the Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure is a serious, albeit common, misconception. Saussure's version is defective next to Peirce's, and not curable by patch-up. That it was Saussure's ideas about signs, and not Peirce's, that gave rise to the Continental form Jacques Derrida and others propagated — and gullible American academics swallowed whole — should not be so glibly elided. Peirce is the greatest intellect the Americas ever produced, and it is his whole philosophy, including his semeiotic (note the spelling and the singular number) that now bids fair to prevail as doctrine.
The writer is an emeritus professor of Slavic and semiotic studies at Brown University.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Monday, August 22, 2011
Denver Post obituary (August 12-14) http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/denverpost/obituary.aspx?n=jerry-dozoretz&pid=153047257 .
Jerry had a Ph.D. in Philosophy from University of Californis, Santa Barbara. He was an Instructor and Assistant Professor of Philosophy from 1970 to 1983. An article of his was published in Peirce Studies 1. Starting in 1983 he worked in the private sector, eventually going into business for himself. He had five children.
Jerry was the chief operating officer of the Peirce Group, which owns the Arisbe website and peirce-l, which were created and long maintained by Joe Ransdell, who passed away in December 2010. Jerry was working on their relocation to the Institute for American Thought at I.U.P.U.I. He was also working on the relocation of Joseph Ransdell's voluminous papers and library to the I.A.T.
In a peirce-l post yesterday, [name deleted at request of the named — B.U. 11/27/2015] said,
I am very sorry to hear this.Jerry was a pleasure to work with. I've been at a loss for words. In our last phone conversation Jerry told me that he and Joe Ransdell had been friends since childhood. As usual he sounded well and upbeat and 20 years younger than he was.
Jerry and I exchanged email in January. He was open and kind, generous with his support and friendship. He was greatly affected by Joe's passing and wanted very much to ensure the future of peirce-l and related materials. It had been on my todo list to follow up with him.
My best wishes and condolences to Jerry's friends and family.
Update October 4, 2011. I thought that Jerry said that they had been friends since childhood; I remember responding during that phone call with that understanding uncontradicted by him. But I must have misunderstood. They were born over 15 years apart.
Jerry Dozoretz Jan. 11, 1947 — Aug. 5, 2011
Thursday, July 28, 2011
FALL 2011 NEW COURSE
CPLS G4340, 3 pts
Interpretation: Theory and Practice
W 2:10pm-4pm, location: Fayerweather 311
Note: For more information on the works by Peirce listed below, go to the Main Editions section of the sidebar on the right.
Office Hours: Wed 10-12
HB 1-6, Heyman Center
MEETING DATES: Sep 7, 14, 21, 28; Oct 5, 12, 19, 26; Nov 2, 9, 16, 23; Dec 7
COURSE REQUIREMENTS: (1) two short papers (3-5 pp.) on a topic to be approved by the instructor, due Oct 26 and Nov 16, resp.; (2) EITHER a longer research paper (10-15 pp.) OR a take-home final exam, due Dec 23.
- C. S. Peirce, The Essential Peirce, 2 vols. (Indiana U.P.)
- T. L. Short, Peirce’s Theory of Signs (Cambridge U.P.)
- Supplementary Readings[= SR] (Course Packet)
- Jerome Bruner, Acts of Meaning (Harvard U.P.)
- Clifford Geertz, The Interpretation of Cultures (Basic Books)
- E. H. Gombrich, Meditations on a Hobby Horse and Other Essays on the Theory of Art (Phaidon Press)
- Roman Jakobson, On Language (Harvard U.P.)
- James J. Liszka, A General Introduction to the Semeiotic of Charles Sanders Peirce (Indiana U.P.)
- Ernst Mayr, Toward a New Philosophy of Biology: Observations of an Evolutionist (Harvard U.P.)
- Ilya Prigogine and Isabelle Stengers, Order Out of Chaos: Man's New Dialogue with Nature (Bantam Books)
- Marshall Sahlins, Culture and Practical Reason (U of Chicago Press)
- Carolyn Eisele (ed.), A History of Science: Historical Perspectives on Peirce’s Logic of Science
- Max H. Fisch, Peirce, Semeiotic, and Pragmatism
- Eugene Freeman (ed.), The Relevance of Charles Peirce
- Michael Cabot Haley, The Semeiosis of Poetic Metaphor
- Charles S. Hardwick (ed.), Semiotic and Significs: The Correspondence between Charles S. Peirce and Victoria Lady Welby
- Robert S. Hatten, Musical Meaning in Beethoven : Markedness, Correlation, and Interpretation
- Kenneth L. Ketner (ed.), A Comprehensive Bibliography of the Published Works of Charles Sanders Peirce with a Bibliography of Secondary Studies
- Kenneth L. Ketner (ed.), Peirce and Contemporary Thought
RESERVE LIST (in addition to the above):
- Charles Sanders Peirce, Collected Papers, 8 vols.
- Charles S. Peirce, Philosophy of Mathematics: Selected Writings
- Charles Sanders Peirce, Pragmatism as a Principle and Method of Right Thinking
- Charles Sanders Peirce, Reasoning and the Logic of Things
- Charles S. Peirce, The New Elements of Mathematics, 4 vols.
- Charles S. Peirce, Writings of Charles S. Peirce: A Chronological Edition, 7 vols.
- David Savan, An Introduction to C. S. Peirce’s Full System of Semeiotic
- Michael and Marianne Shapiro, Figuration in Verbal Art
- Michael Shapiro (ed.), The Peirce Seminar Papers: Essays in Semiotic Analysis, 5 vols.
- Michael Shapiro, The Sense of Change: Language as History
- Michael and Marianne Shapiro, The Sense of Form in Literature and Language, 2nd ed.
- Michael Shapiro, The Sense of Grammar: Language as Semeiotic
RESERVE LIST (cont.)
READING ASSIGNMENTS (except for pages in Gombrich, all references are to chapters):
- Essential Peirce I: 1, 2, 3
- Essential Peirce II: 2, 11, 12, 15, 16, 22, 28, 32, 33
- Liszka: 1
- Short: 7, 8, 9
- SR: 1, 2, 3
- Essential Peirce I: 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24
- Bruner: 3
- Geertz: 1, 2
- Gombrich: 1, 12, 45, 56
- Jakobson: 4, 5, 6, 7, 20, 21, 23, 27, 28, 29
- Liszka: 2
- Mayr: 1, 2, 3
- Prigogine & Stengers: 3, 4, 5, 6
- Sahlins: 2
- SR: 4, 5, 6
- Bruner: 2
- Geertz: 3, 5
- Gombrich: 86, 106
- Jakobson: 2, 9, 10, 25
- Mayr: 5, 6, 7, 8
- Prigogine & Stengers: 7, 8, 9
- Sahlins: 5
- Short: 4, 5, 6
- SR: 7, 8, 9, 10
Thursday, January 6, 2011
June 5, 1931 - December 27, 2010.
I've discussed things with Joe for years on peirce-l and occasionally off-list.
I owe him; but for him and peirce-l I might have remained intellectually isolated and semi-articulate. I spoke with him for the first and only time, on November 19th by phone. His intelligence was as energetic as ever, but he was ill. I'm glad I called him and managed to mention that I look up to him.
Joe opposed the concept of intellectual authority; but he was marked by something similar but genuine: possession of ideas and understandings to which those who are interested in the same matters owe attention and response.
The obituary was posted today at http://lubbockonline.com/obituaries/2011-01-06/joseph-morton-ransdell. Somebody added it to the Peirce article at Wikipedia and that's how I found out (so I emailed peirce-l). Robert Lane soon followed with this:
From: "Robert Lane"
To: [The Charles S. Peirce Society]
Sent: Thursday, January 06, 2011 1:16 PM
Subject: Peirce Society: Joe Ransdell
Fellow members of the Charles S. Peirce Society,
I have just learned the sad news of the recent death of Joe Ransdell. Joe was a Peirce scholar who taught at Texas Tech University from 1974 until his retirement in 2000. Among his contributions to the study of Peirce and to the community of Peirce scholars were his creation of the "Arisbe: the Peirce Gateway" website (http://www.cspeirce.com/) and his founding of the Peirce-L Discussion Forum, for which he also served as moderator. Joe was a Fellow of the Peirce Society, having served as our president in 1999.
An online obituary is here:
A memorial service will be held this Saturday, January 8, in Lubbock,
Texas. Details are here:
Robert Lane, Ph.D.
Secretary-Treasurer, Charles S. Peirce Society
Associate Professor and Director of Philosophy
Department of English and Philosophy
University of West Georgia
Carrollton, GA 30118
[phone number & email removed]
I've just received this note on Joe from a past peirce-lister:
Blessed repose and eternal memory...
Monday, January 3, 2011
In the next to last chapter Mayo tries her hand at one of American philosophy's perennial amusements, the game of Peirce Knew It All Along. (If, as Whitehead said, European thought is a series of footnotes to Plato, American thought is a series of footnotes to Peirce --- and Jonathan Edwards, worse luck.) Usually this is a mere demonstration of cleverness, like coining words from the names of opponents, or improving on the proof that if 1+1=3, then Bertrand Russell was the Pope. But in this case it seems that Mayo is really on to something. It is sometimes forgotten that Peirce was by training an experimental scientist, was employed as an experimental physicist for years, and as such lived and breathed error analysis. His opposition to subjective probabilities and paint-by-numbers inductivism is plain. For him "induction" meant the experimental testing of hypotheses; the probabilities employed in induction are the probabilities of inductive procedures leading to correct answers:Well, Shalizi seems a bit jaded at the amount of crediting of Peirce, but his "Peirce Knew It All Along" remark is too delicious to pass up. As to Shalizi, he's an assistant professor in the statistics department at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and his original training was in the statistical physics of complex systems.The theory here proposed does not assign any probability to the inductive or hypothetic conclusion, in the sense of undertaking to say how frequently that conclusion would be found true. It does not propose to look through all the possible universes, and say in what proportion of them a certain uniformity occurs; such a proceeding, were it possible, would be quite idle. The theory here presented only says how frequently, in this universe, the special form of induction or hypothesis would lead us right. The probability given by this theory is in every way different --- in meaning, numerical value, and form --- from that of those who would apply to ampliative inference the doctrine of inverse chances [i.e., Bayes's theorem]. [2.748, quoted p. 414]
Note: I redid Shalizi's broken link on coinages to go to the Internet Archive version of that to which he linked. The recentest version is the 2008 edition at an unrelated URL http://www.philosophicallexicon.com/ .
(Now let's see whether for once I've done a post that I don't need to revise afterward! Update: No such luck. I had omitted the year of Shalizi's 1998 review.)