Kriesel and Wittgenstein
MetadataShow full item record
Citation (published version)Akihiro Kanamori. 2019. "Kriesel and Wittgenstein."
Georg Kreisel (15 September 1923 - 1 March 2015) was a formidable mathematical logician during a formative period when the subject was becoming a sophisticated field at the crossing of mathematics and logic. Both with his technical sophistication for his time and his dialectical engagement with mandates, aspirations and goals, he inspired wide-ranging investigation in the metamathematics of constructivity, proof theory and generalized recursion theory. Kreisel's mathematics and interactions with colleagues and students have been memorably described in Kreiseliana ([Odifreddi, 1996]). At a different level of interpersonal conceptual interaction, Kreisel during his life time had extended engagement with two celebrated logicians, the mathematical Kurt Gödel and the philosophical Ludwig Wittgenstein. About Gödel, with modern mathematical logic palpably emanating from his work, Kreisel has reflected and written over a wide mathematical landscape. About Wittgenstein on the other hand, with an early personal connection established Kreisel would return as if with an anxiety of influence to their ways of thinking about logic and mathematics, ever in a sort of dialectic interplay. In what follows we draw this out through his published essays—and one letter—both to elicit aspects of influence in his own terms and to set out a picture of Kreisel's evolving thinking about logic and mathematics in comparative relief.