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Richard Rorty: The Making of an American Philosopher

Richard Rorty: The Making of an American Philosopher

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Published by UChicagoPress

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Publish date: Nov 15, 2009
Added to Scribd: Nov 19, 2009
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reservedISBN:9780226309910
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12/20/2014

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9780226309910

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Publishers Weekly reviewed this
The contemporary philosopher Richard Rorty (1931-2007) was the epitome of a successful academic--educated and then employed at prestigious institutions, he saw his influence extend into sociology, cultural studies and literary criticism. Harvard assistant professor Gross concentrates on Rorty's professional successes in academia and sends a discouraging message to both the graduate student and the academy. Using Rorty's career as a case study, Gross observes the "social hierarchy" among disciplines and notes that academics are largely motivated by desires for intellectual prestige, that "radical intellectual innovation is most likely to come, not from young scholars, but from those who are sufficiently established as to be able to take bold professional risks," and that "aspiring intellectuals compete with one another for the limited attention of mentors." Citing the case of Rorty's first wife, Amelie--who was also trained as a philosopher, but was repeatedly forced to sacrifice her career for Rorty's--Gross illuminates the unequal opportunities for the ambitious wives of male intellectuals. The book's subtle yet scathing critique of the tenure and promotion systems within universities reveals how such systems actually inhibit innovation in young scholars. A specialized sociological study of the academy, this book will appeal to all those concerned with the state of research in higher education. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

2008-03-17, Publishers Weekly
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