Jean Cavaillès

Jean Cavaillès (1903–1944) was a French logician and philosopher who taught in Paris and Strasbourg. He was imprisoned as a member of the French Resistance and was executed by the Gestapo on February 17, 1944.

  • On Logic and the Theory of Science

    On Logic and the Theory of Science

    Jean Cavaillès

    A new translation of the final work of French philosopher Jean Cavaillès.

    In this short, dense essay, Jean Cavaillès evaluates philosophical efforts to determine the origin—logical or ontological—of scientific thought, arguing that, rather than seeking to found science in original intentional acts, a priori meanings, or foundational logical relations, any adequate theory must involve a history of the concept.

    Cavaillès insists on a historical epistemology that is conceptual rather than phenomenological, and a logic that is dialectical rather than transcendental. His famous call (cited by Foucault) to abandon "a philosophy of consciousness" for "a philosophy of the concept" was crucial in displacing the focus of philosophical enquiry from aprioristic foundations toward structural historical shifts in the conceptual fabric.This new translation of Cavaillès's final work, written in 1942 during his imprisonment for Resistance activities, presents an opportunity to reencounter an original and lucid thinker. Cavaillès's subtle adjudication between positivistic claims that science has no need of philosophy, and philosophers' obstinate disregard for actual scientific events, speaks to a dilemma that remains pertinent for us today. His affirmation of the authority of scientific thinking combined with his commitment to conceptual creation yields a radical defense of the freedom of thought and the possibility of the new.

    • Paperback $16.95 £12.99

Contributor

  • Collapse, Volume 8

    Collapse, Volume 8

    Casino Real

    Robin Mackay

    An assembly of perspectives on risk, contingency, and chance—at the gaming table, in the markets, and in life.

    A transdisciplinary survey of practices that produce, analyse, and exploit risk and uncertainty, the eighth volume of Collapse uncovers the conceptual underpinnings of methods designed to extract value from contingency—at the gaming table, in the markets, and in life. The indictment of “casino capitalism” and the centrality of risk to contemporary society are traced back to a ubiquitous image of thought that originated in games of chance, but which is no longer adequate to address a world whose realities are now shaped by risk models and trading in speculative futures.

    To challenge the “casino” model, this volume brings together philosophers who extend the thinking of contingency beyond statistical modelling, professional traders and gamblers whose lifelong experience has shaped their understanding of chance, researchers analysing the perception and treatment of risk and uncertainty in diverse arenas including derivatives trading, quantum physics, insurance, sonic experimentation, literature, futurology, mathematics, and machine gambling, and artists whose work addresses both the desire to confront chance and the need to tame it by bringing it to order.

    • Paperback $31.95 £25.00