Thursday, 30 November 2017

Jerry Fodor 1939 - 2017

A founding giant of the twentieth century neurological approach to consciousness, Dr. Jerry Fodor has sadly passed away. A great figure, this man mixed jokes in to his philosophical writings, and was a cantankerous figure at time arguing about this and that thesis with no punches pulled. He was a staunch critic of what he was a critic of, and was equally happy to be proven wrong. Then on the things he liked and think were right, he was correspondingly enthusiating. Many people have said interesting stories about knowing and loving Jerry Fodor. He was obviously someone that many people enjoyed their work. And his work may be genuinely helpful in understanding the topics with which it dealt. Here's to a great career for an excellent philosopher!

As a kid he showed a great interest in science and philosophy, and he came to study it ever since. After learning philosophy, he began a writing and teaching career that remains unequalled. I remember reading his mean comments about Wittgenstein in his paper about the lganguage of thought and thinking what a bugger, I think he's wrong. But I still enjoyed it.

Please leave any comments you like in the comments, but try to be accurate. Many people have recently made false statements in the comments, and this is especially not the place, as it might be disrespectful to Jerry Fodor. Thanks for all the good writing Jerry, and finally everyone, go and have a read of his wonderful article,

Image result for philosophy of mind

Water's water everywhere

Image result for jerry fodor


  1. Thanks for this. I don't think we'll find Jocone reading any of Fodor's stuff any time soon, even though he was a great senior figure! What's it like to be a bat? Maybe more like 'What's it like to be a dog Jocone?'! Just kidding, Fodor is a great figure.

  2. Sometimes when people were talking about philosophy at my alma mater, we'd all say "Well we all know what Fodor thinks!" or "Fodor aside, ..."! He will be sorely missed. I remember seeing him come down the corridor loaded with books, I think he almost dropped them. There was something touchingly human about the man.

  3. The language of thought hypothesis revitalised my thinking at a time when I thought that nothing else could. I thank Jerry Fodor for the ability to look at the mind through this prism of language. Ten years later, and I'm still looking. 'Can't take my eyes of you'.

  4. Dear Jerry Fodor
    Thank you for the memories
    I love to read your work
    I love your idea that we all have
    An idea in our head already for every idea

    I would have loved to meet you and ask you
    All about your ideas
    I loved what you contributed and really
    Even those who thought you were wrong
    Or a goof
    Had to admit both that you were
    Clever and thought provoking
    And very funny

    I will not be able to continue this poem
    As I have a 4/5 teaching load at a small
    But I will conclude with the great words:

    Thank you for living your life Jerry Fodor. I enjoyed reading your work.