Brandom Interviewed


Jeffrey J. Williams conducts a wide-ranging and thoughtful interview with Bob Brandom in the journal Symploke. The interview (PDF) covers Brandom’s thoughts about the enterprise of philosophy, its analytic and continental traditions, its major figures, as well as reflections on his own life and career.

From the interview:

Jeffrey J. Williams: What would you say, in a nutshell, is philosophy?
Robert Brandom: I think philosophy is about what it means to be a
human being. Lots of things are about that, of course, but one dimension
that philosophers are particularly interested in, that distinguish us within the
high culture, is how we are creatures who give and ask for reasons, which
is something that I understand under the heading of inference. What is it
for something to be a reason, and what it is for us to be creatures who give
reasons, who care about reasons, who demand reasons? I am concerned to
understand us as creatures defined by living in a normative space of reasons.
These concerns overlap in the origins of philosophy—in ancient Greece, Plato
and Aristotle were fascinated and puzzled by this normative force of a better
reason. And so are philosophers today.

 

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