Brand Blanshard, emeritus Sterling professor of philosophy at Yale University, is the leading rationalist on the contemporary Anglo-American scene. A graduate. Brand Blanshard. Wisdom in its broadest and commonest sense denotes sound and serene judgment regarding the conduct of life. It may be accompanied by a. Manchester University, Brand Blanshard. Lord Macaulay once recorded in his diary a memorable attempt—his first and apparently also.

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It was Charles Hendel who brought Bland Blanshard to Yale where Brand was to teach from until his retirement in If we are going to deal in paper money, let us at least be sure it is convertible into coin. The memories and appreciations spoken that day and some from letters are printed in this booklet,” which Roberta Yerkes Blanshard, Branx widow, mailed me on May 5, One of the most eminent philosophers of this century conceived logic as the theory of inquiry, and it was therefore important for him to define inquiry in the clearest possible terms.

Second, what appears to be intuitive insight may express nothing more than a confirmed habit or prejudice. I must confess a weak-ness, if it is a weakness, for this sort of rhe-toric; indeed, when Burke or Sir Thomas Browne, De Quincey or Ruskin, lets out all the stops, one blansharx to be pretty deaf not to hear.

Let us look first at the words used by philosophers, and then at their sentences. Even a philosopher cannot mean such an absurdity.

Many bgand have felt this, but found that it grows quickly cold when they put pen to paper. The ideal is a row of steppingstones just far enough apart to enable him to keep moving without compelling him to make hops, skips, and jumps, still less leaps in the dark. If one is to have grand rule about this, it must, I think, be a vague one, to the effect that each sentence should carry the thought one step forward. His philosophical interests had shifted away from religion.

In his later years, however, he came to think that the relation between thought and object was sui generis and might brrand described, about equally inadequately, as either “correspondence” or “coherence”; at any rate, he admitted, the “coherence” between thought and its ideal object differs from the coherence that may obtain among thoughts.

Defining “religion” as the dedication of one’s whole person to whatever one regards as true and important, he took as his own religion the service of reason in a very full and all-encompassing metaphysical sense, defending what he called the “rational temper” as a bpanshard ideal though one exceedingly difficult to achieve in practice.


What does the theologian b,anshard when he talks about God? So straightforward a question deserves a straightforward answer, and it seems to me that only one such answer makes sense, namely that the two sides can not be reconciled. But though even Dr. By reflectiveness is meant the habit of considering events and beliefs in the light of their grounds and consequences.

Brand Blanshard

The highest wisdom of all, Plato contended, is that required by the statesman, who is called upon to fix both the goals toward which society strives and the complex methods by which it may most effectively move toward them. But just because philosophy runs to generality, and has there-fore a natural bent for the Latin, the reader is the more surprised and pleased when he finds it written in the homelier idiom.

A powerful polemicistby all accounts he comported himself with courtesy and grace in philosophical controversies and exemplified the “rational temper” he advocated. They were all deeply religious men whose philosophy was an articulation of their faith, and as they were tremendous masters of the spoken word, they were irresistible when they could plead their case in person.

They want him to speak about them in such a way that they can overhear and, so far as practicable, under-stand. Or take this, from so competent a writer as Dean Rashdall: The most distinguished recent exemplar of imaginative prose in philosophy is certainly George Santayana. Many a schoolboy has thought Euclid abominably obscure, and so he was — to the schoolboy. Now for those who read solely through the eye, rhythm, which is addressed to the era, must be of small concern.

No philosopher is or can be a disembodied cerebrum; what he is called on to exclude is not all emotions but only irrelevant emotions. What is left him? Fortunately, Freud and others have shown that these irrational factors can be tracked down and largely neutralized.

On the other hand there are some purveyors of philosophy who pass all under-standing, no blansuard whose.

Brand Blanshard |

Many years later, Bertrand Russell was to express surprise at the quality of Brand’s poetry. But that style, though not all-important, is important nevertheless is plain enough if we pair some eminent names that naturally occur together. But it shows also that the problem we have been discussing is no petty or merely technical one, but very far-reaching indeed. We have seen how philosophical writing tends to excessive generality. On the logical side it serves to bring to light the instance that might shake or destroy our principle; and, as T.


The family moved northwest to Bay View, Michiganwhile Francis moved alone to Albuquerque, New Mexicowhere, inhe died, alone in a tent. Views Read Edit View history.

One of Blanshard’s most important exchanges on this topic was with philosopher Ernest Nagelwho attacked the doctrine of internal relations — indeed, Blanshard’s entire conception of reason — in his essay “Sovereign Reason”. On the expository side, it supplies a liberal chest of tools with which to sharpen and drive home our point. Again, the individual may similarly profit from the increasing age of the race; since knowledge is cumulative, he can stand on the shoulders of his predecessors.

Clifford, said of an acquain-tance: Very well, does the dent come after the pressure that causes it or not?

Brand Blanshard

Look at the statement by the eminent logician whom Russell had trouble with. He consistently refused to adopt the prosaic medium in which most of his colleagues were writing. In Francis Blanshard set out for the West in search of better health leaving his two sons to be cared for by their grandmother.

She died of burns the next day. He regarded his metaphysical monism as essentially a form of Spinozism. We have all known students who say helpless before philosophers who were classics of brad. The Puritans who condemned music and drama as worthless blanzhard hardly have excluded them if they had known what they were excluding; in these matters wider experience brings an amended judgment. Kant was so convinced that this would happen that, for the most part, he deliberately abstained from illustrations.

The world for me is a necessary system, and in the degree to which the thinker can surrender his thought to that system and follow it, he is in a sense participating in that which is timeless or eternal. InBlanshard married Frances Bradshaw, [5] who would become dean of women at Swarthmore.

Some philoso-phers write to plan and scale; their heads and subheads are worked out in advance, and they follow them as a lawyer does his brief.

Hegel would say that a finite determination of infinity had been further determined by its own negation.