University of Pittsburgh
July 14, 1999

PITT ACQUIRES PAPERS OF RENOWNED PHILOSOPHER

Contact: 

Sharon Blake

412-624-4364

Cell: 412-277-6926

PITTSBURGH, July 15 -- The University of Pittsburgh Library System has acquired the personal and professional papers of the late Carl G. Hempel -- one of this century's most important philosophers.

Hempel, who passed away in November 1997, studied under both Hans Reichenbach and Rudolf Carnap, who are among the founding fathers of scientific philosophy. After immigrating in the 1930s, Hempel remained in close touch with both men as he helped foster the rise of scientific philosophy in the United States. At Pitt, Queens College, Yale and Princeton, Hempel taught some of the nation's most promising graduate students in philosophy, many of whom went on to make distinguished contributions of their own to the field.

Hempel's books, papers, notes, correspondence, detailed diaries and teaching materials represent a rich and intellectual biography that will be a valuable addition to the University's Archives of Scientific Philosophy (ASP) which is housed within Hillman Library's Special Collections Department. The holdings consist almost entirely of works devoted to the philosophy of science, logic, the philosophy of mind and the philosophy of language. The Hempel Collection will be microfilmed to preserve the originals and make the materials accessible. Under a preexisting agreement, a copy of the microfilmed collection will be deposited at the University of Konstanz in Germany.

The collection adds to the strength and prestige of the University's Center for Philosophy of Science, one of the world's leading centers supporting research in scientific philosophy. Carl Hempel was a resident fellow of the Center from 1977 - 1985 and was one of only two individuals named fellow honoris causa of the Center.

The acquisition is made possible through the support of the Hillman Foundation.

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