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May 7th, 2008

Shazeen Samad

My first ever book has just come out, and is now available world-wide. Here’s what it looks like:

Cover Gill’s Book  Cover Proof Gill’s book 

It’s called Truth in Virtue of Meaning and it’s basically a new account of the analytic-synthetic distinction (one which is designed to fit better with phenomena like contextualism and semantic externalism than pre-Quine conceptions of the distinction did), and a defence of that distinction against about 7-zillion arguments (ok, maybe more like 15 arguments) against analyticity.

I’m going to post a bit more about the content of the book later in the week, but what I thought I’d do right now is tell you a bit about the photograph on the cover. The photo is by a Maldivian photographer called Shazeen Samad. He has a beautiful website and some of my favourite images of his are here, here, here and here. If you are looking to procrastinate while you should be grading/writing that final paper, and you won’t be depressed by images of incredibly beautiful people hanging out in what appears to be the most beautiful place on earth, then the site comes highly recommended.

The photo that Shazeen very kindly let me use is called “Maldavian Reflection” and it is an image of the ocean at sunset, when the water is so still that the entire sky (which has lots of cool clouds) is reflected in it. A couple of people have remarked that the picture is beautiful, but doesn’t have much to do with the topic of the book. But to those people I say two things: first, off, what did you want? pictures of bachelors? of one concept containing another? and second: not so! when you first look at the photograph it can seem pretty chaotic and hard to work out what it is a picture of. But then you look harder, and you realise that it is in two halves, with the horizon down the middle and that everything below the horizon is water, and everything above it is sky. What could be more appropriate?

Posted by Gillian Russell in Uncategorized

7 Comments »

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7 Responses to “Shazeen Samad”

  1. Kenny Easwaran says:

    Congratulations!

  2. Gillian Russell says:

    Thanks, Kenny!

  3. DanielNolan says:

    Congratulations on the great looking (and great-contented) book, Gill. For what it’s worth, I thought the photo was very appropriate – I didn’t get the chaos-resolving-into-order thing, but I did see the symbolism of there being a dividing line that was not entirely obvious on first glance. So I thought it was an excellent choice symbolically as well as aesthetically.

  4. Ole Hjortland says:

    Congratulations!

  5. Gillian Russell says:

    Thanks Ole and Dan! Dan, I didn’t mean to emphasise the chaos part anyway – only the distinction that was hard to see actually being v. clear and obviously correct once you did see it. I’m starting to feel a bit like a philosopher who kills all their jokes by explaining them though..maybe I should have left it alone!

  6. Tim Kenyon says:

    Congratulations on your (gorgeous) book, Gill. I look forward to reading it.

  7. Gillian Russell says:

    Thanks, Tim. And the same to you!

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