Juliet Floyd

Professor of Philosophy
STH 503
Ph.D., Harvard University, B.A., Wellesley College

Interests: History and Philosophy of Logic and Mathematics, Philosophy of Language, Epistemology, History of Early Analytic Philosophy, Wittgenstein, Kant, Aesthetics
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Professor Floyd’s Personal Website.

Professor Floyd joined the faculty at Boston University from the City College of New York and C.U.N.Y. (1990-1994), where she served as Associate Director of the Ph.D. program at the Graduate Center (1993-4). A philosopher of logic, mathematics and science, her research focuses on the interplay between logic and philosophy from the 18th to the 20th centuries. She is especially known for her work on Wittgenstein’s philosophy of logic and mathematics, but writes widely about such notions as the nature and limitations of philosophical and axiomatic methods, logic and foundations of mathematics, simplicity and modernism in mathematics and the arts, skepticism and rule-following, the concepts of “rigor” and the “everyday” in early twentieth-century philosophy, and the history of American philosophy and pragmatism in relation to European twentieth century analytic philosophy (Vienna Circle, Carnap, Quine, Putnam, Rawls, Cavell) . She has furthered the historical study of 20th century analytic philosophy in an international context, holding Visiting Professorships at the Universities of Vienna, Paris (I, Panthéon-Sorbonne), and Bordeaux (Michel de Montaigne). She co-edited Future Pasts: The Analytic Tradition in Twentieth Century Philosophy (with S. Shieh, Oxford University Press, 2001/online 2004), Philosophy of Emerging Media: Understanding, Appreciation, Application (with J.E. Katz, Oxford University Press 2016) and the soon to appear Philosophical Explorations of the Legacy of Alan Turing: Turing 100 (with A. Bokulich, Springer Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science Series). She is currently working on a manuscript treating the impact on Wittgenstein in the mid-1930s of Turing’s and Gödel’s undecidability and incompleteness results. For 2016-18 she has been awarded a Mellon Sawyer Seminar Grant for faculty development (with James E. Katz and Russell Powell) to pursue research into the philosophy of emerging computational technologies and the ways they are transforming social, ethical, and philosophical aspects of everyday life.


Das Überraschende:  Wittgenstein on the Surprising in Mathematics”, in Jon Ellis and Daniel Guevara, eds., Wittgenstein and the Philosophy of Mind (Oxford University Press, forthcoming).  French translation : “Das Überraschende:  Wittgenstein et Le Surprenant dans les Mathématiques”, in Claude Romano, ed., Wittgenstein, Les Éditions du CERF (forthcoming in French, trans. Valérie Aucouturier).  Portuguese translation: “Das Überraschende: Wittgenstein sobre o surpreender em Matemática”, (trans. M. Condé), forthcoming, BOLEMA, A Brazilian Journal for the Philosophy of Mathematics April, 2011 (38): 127-169. [pdf]

“Wittgenstein’s Diagonal Argument: A Variation on Cantor and Turing”, in Epistemology versus Ontology: Essays on the Philosophy and Foundations of Mathematics in Honour of Per Martin-Löf, eds. Peter Dybjer, Sten Lindström, Erik Palmgren and Göran Sundholm (Logic, Epistemology and the Unity of Science Series, Springer Verlag, forthcoming 2012). [pdf]

“Rawls’s Restatement of Justice as Fairness: An Introductory Overview”, in K. Dethloff, N. Charlotte, R. Staubmann, and A. Weiberg, Hgs., Humane Existenz. Reflexionen zur Ethik in einer pluralistischen Gesellschaft (Berlin: Parerga, 2007), pp. 17-35. [pdf]

“Wittgenstein and the Inexpressible” in A. Crary, ed., Wittgenstein and the Moral Life: Essays in Honor of Cora Diamond (MIT Press, 2007), pp. 177-234. [pdf]

“Wittgenstein über das Überraschende in der Mathematik”, trans. Joachim Schulte, in M. Kross, Hsg., <<Ein Netz von Normen>> Ludwig Wittgenstein und die Mathematik (Berlin: Parerga Verlag, 2008), pp. 41-77.

“Wittgensteins ‚berüchtigter’ Paragraph über das Gödel-Theorem: Neuere Diskussionen“ (with Hilary Putnam), in Prosa oder Besweis? Wittgensteins ›berüchtigte‹ Bemerkungen zu Gödel, Texte und Dokumente, Esther Ramharter hrsg., (Berlin: Parerga Verlag, 2008), pp. 75-97.

“On Being Surprised: Wittgenstein on Aspect Perception, Logic and Mathematics”, in V. Krebs and W. Day, eds., Seeing Wittgenstein Anew: New Essays on Aspect Seeing (Cambridge University Press, 2010), pp. 314-337. [pdf]

Editorial preface to translation into English of “Gottlob Frege, Letters to Ludwig Wittgenstein”, in E. De Pellegrin,  ed., Interactive Wittgenstein: Essays in Memory of Georg Henrik von Wright (Dordrecht (etc.), Springer Verlag, Synthese Library vol. 349, 2011), pp. 1-14. [pdf]

Translation into English of “Gottlob Frege, Letters to Ludwig Wittgenstein” (with Burton Dreben) in E. De Pellegrin, ed., Interactive Wittgenstein: Essays in Memory of Georg Henrik von Wright (Dordrecht (etc.), Springer Verlag, Synthese Library vol. 349, 2011), pp. 15-73 [pdf]

“The Frege-Wittgenstein Correspondence: Interpretive Themes”, in E. De Pellegrin, ed., Interactive Wittgenstein: Essays in Memory of Georg Henrik von Wright (Dordrecht (etc.), Springer Verlag, Synthese Library vol. 349, 2011), pp. 75-107. [pdf]

“Recent Themes in the History of Early Analytic Philosophy”, for “Current Scholarship” series in The Journal of the History of Philosophy, 47, 2, April 2009: 157-200 [pdf]