Wellesley College, 1958–1961

in Richard Rorty

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print May 2008 | ISBN: 9780226309903
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226309910 | DOI:
Wellesley College, 1958–1961

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Paralleling his father's experiences, Richard Rorty found his two years of military service to be emotionally trying. After being discharged, he tried to make up for lost time professionally. His first job offer—an instructorship at Wellesley College beginning in 1958 that would roll over into an assistant professorship in 1960—must have seemed a solid but not stellar achievement. However, while not as highly valued as a post in a top graduate program, the Wellesley job would still have been regarded as one worth taking, particularly by graduates of Yale University, because of the college's general reputation, the high quality of the students, the insistence of student constituencies at top liberal arts schools like Wellesley that philosophy remain historically grounded and broad in reach, the college's proximity to Boston, and—perhaps—the fact that the department's chair at the time, Virginia Onderdonk, who had done her graduate work at the University of Chicago, had been a student of the later Ludwig Wittgenstein while studying abroad at Cambridge.

Keywords: Richard Rorty; Wellesley College; Yale University; liberal arts; philosophy; Virginia Onderdonk; University of Chicago; Ludwig Wittgenstein

Chapter.  7877 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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