Just as Kant managed to recast a good bit of the history of philosophy as a struggle between rationalism and empiricism (thus leading to his synthesis of the two), Brandom has recast a substantial portion of modern philosophy as a struggle over the consequences of inferentialist approaches. The way he shows that there is a coherent line to he traced from Leibniz to Spinoza to Kant to Hegel to Frege to Heidegger to Wittgenstein to Sellars is brilliant; it will quite naturally also he controversial (in all the best senses). This is one of those books that will force even the people who disagree most with him to have to take his position all the more seriously. If nothing else, this shows that the usual ways of drawing the (by now tired) "continental/analytic" distinctions are in serious need of rethinking. Brandom's is an original voice. Brandom's work, obviously analytical in orientation, also claims to take its inspirations from figures normally shunned in analytic circles. This makes him a key figure in the effort to "overcome" the dichotomy. (Terry Pinkard Northwestern University
About the Author
Robert B. Brandom is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Fellow of the Center for Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh.