28 September 2012

Blanking on Rödl

From today's NDPR review of "The Twenty-Five Years of Philosophy":

Although this seems on its surface to suggest a possible link between Goethe's idea, at least generally taken, and the more recent work by Michael Thompson and Sebastian Rödl on how species terms work, Förster does not explore that link. On the other hand, one can't do everything.
What work by Rödl does Pinkard have in mind? I thought Rödl just pointed to "The Representation of Life" when he needed to talk about species terms; am I just forgetting somewhere that Rödl does the work for himself? Or is Pinkard mistaken in thinking that Rödl is relevant on just this point? (His work is clearly something that should be sat next to Förster's book as a whole, so I'm glad he got mentioned in the review. But I don't see why he got mentioned just here.)

On Facebook, Ben Wolfson pointed to chapter six of "Categories of Temporality", but that doesn't satisfy me: Rödl doesn't talk about animal species as such very much there, and in any case he points to Thompson a few times in that book (all three parts of "Life and Action" are in his bibliography), so Pinkard's sentence still feels weird.

Another possibility that occurs to me is that Pinkard meant to point to Rödl's discussion of "species" in the logical sense (the things under a genus), in which case chapter six of "Categories of Temporality" is clearly relevant. But then mentioning Thompson seems odd: I can't think of any work of his which is that general, as opposed to work on "species" as a type of life-form.

I feel like I'm just forgetting something Rödl's written.

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