A. J. Ayer

Ayer, Sir Alfred Jules

Sir Alfred Jules Ayer (ā´ər, âr), 1910–89, British philosopher, b. London, grad. Oxford, 1932. From 1933 to 1944 he was lecturer and research fellow at Oxford's Christ Church College and then was fellow (1944–45) and dean (1945–46) of Wadham College. From 1946 to 1959 Ayer was Grote professor of the philosophy of mind and logic at the Univ. of London, and in 1959 he became Wykeham professor of logic at Oxford. His extremely influential Language, Truth, and Logic (1936) brought logical positivism to the attention of British and American philosophers. Among his other works are The Foundations of Empirical Knowledge (1940), Philosophical Essays (1954), The Problem of Knowledge (1956), and The Concept of a Person (1963). He was knighted in 1970.

See biography by B. Rogers (2000).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2015, The Columbia University Press.

A. J. Ayer: Selected full-text books and articles

The Philosophy of A. J. Ayer By Lewis Edwin Hahn Open Court, 1992
The Problem of Knowledge By A. J. Ayer MacMillan, 1956
Logical Positivism By A. J. Ayer Free Press, 1959
Philosophical Essays By A. J. Ayer MacMillan, 1954
Studies in Communication: Contributed to the Communication Research Centre, University College, London By Colin Cherry; T. B. L. Webster; Geoffrey Vickers; Randolph Quirk; D. B. Fry; B. Ifor Evans; J. Z. Young; R. Wittkower; A. J. Ayer; J. B. S. Haldane; University College, London Secker & Warburg, 1955
Librarian’s tip: "What is Communication?" by A. J. Ayer begins on p. 11
The Revolution in Philosophy By W. C. Kneale; G. A. Paul; D. F. Pears; R. A. Wollheim; P. F. Strawson; A. J. Ayer; G. J. Warnock St. Martin's Press, 1956
Librarian’s tip: "The Vienna Circle" by A. J. Ayer begins on p. 70
The Moral Judgment: Readings in Contemporary Meta-Ethics By Paul W. Taylor Prentice Hall, 1963
Librarian’s tip: "Ethical Terms as Emotive Expressions" by A. J. Ayer begins on p. 120
Morality and the Good Life By Paul K. Moser; Thomas L. Carson Oxford University Press, 1997
Librarian’s tip: Chap. 3 "A. J. Ayer, Critique of Ethics," Chap. 4 "W. D. Ross, Critique of Ayer," and Chap. 5 "A. J. Ayer, Reply to Critics"
Philosophy in the Twentieth Century: An Anthology By Henry D. Aiken; William Barrett Random House, vol.3, 1962
Librarian’s tip: "A. J. Ayer" begins on p. 52
Philosophy and Philosophers: An Introduction to Western Philosophy By John Shand UCL Press, 1993
Librarian’s tip: Chap. Ten "Logical Positivism and Falsificationism: Ayer, Popper"
Religion and Radical Empiricism By Nancy Frankenberry State University of New York Press, 1987
Librarian’s tip: "A.J. Ayer and Logical Positivism" begins on p. 51
The Structure of Metaphysics By Morris Lazerowitz; John Wisdom Routledge and Paul, 1955
Librarian’s tip: Discussion of A. J. Ayer begins on p. 108
The Oxford Companion to Philosophy By Ted Honderich Oxford University Press, 1995
Librarian’s tip: "Ayer, Alfred Jules (1910-89)" begins on p. 72
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