Ernest Nagel


Ernest Nagel was born in Nové Mesto nad Váhom, Trenín Region, Slovakia on November 16th, 1901 and is the Philosopher. At the age of 83, Ernest Nagel biography, profession, age, height, weight, eye color, hair color, build, measurements, education, career, dating/affair, family, news updates, and networth are available.

Date of Birth
November 16, 1901
United States
Place of Birth
Nové Mesto nad Váhom, Trenín Region, Slovakia
Death Date
Sep 20, 1985 (age 83)
Zodiac Sign
Philosopher, University Teacher
Ernest Nagel Height, Weight, Eye Color and Hair Color

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Ernest Nagel Religion, Education, and Hobbies
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CCNY (BSc, 1923), Columbia University (PhD, 1931)
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Ernest Nagel Personal Life

Nagel was born in Nové Mesto nad Váhom (now in Slovakia, then Vágújhely and part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire). His mother, Frida Weiss, was from the nearby town of Vrbové (or Verbo). He emigrated to the United States at the age of 10 and became a U.S. citizen in 1919. He received a BSc from the City College of New York in 1923, and earned his PhD from Columbia University in 1931, with a dissertation on the concept of measurement. Except for one year (1966-1967) at Rockefeller University, he spent his entire academic career at Columbia. He became the first John Dewey Professor of Philosophy there in 1955. And then University Professor from 1967 until his retirement in 1970, after which he continued to teach. In 1977, he was one of the few philosophers elected to the National Academy of Sciences.

His work concerned the philosophy of mathematical fields such as geometry and probability, quantum mechanics, and the status of reductive and inductive theories of science. His book The Structure of Science (1961) practically inaugurated the field of analytic philosophy of science. He expounded the different kinds of explanation in different fields, and was sceptical about attempts to unify the nature of scientific laws or explanations. He was the first to propose that by positing analytic equivalencies (or "bridge laws") between the terms of different sciences, one could eliminate all ontological commitments except those required by the most basic science. He also upheld the view that social sciences are scientific, and should adopt the same standards as natural sciences.

Nagel wrote An Introduction to Logic and the Scientific Method with Morris Raphael Cohen, his CCNY teacher in 1934. In 1958, he published with James R. Newman Gödel's proof, a short book explicating Gödel's incompleteness theorems to those not well trained in mathematical logic. He edited the Journal of Philosophy (1939–1956) and the Journal of Symbolic Logic (1940-1946).

As a public intellectual, he supported a skeptical approach to claims of the paranormal, becoming one of the first sponsors and fellows of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry in 1976, along with 24 other notable philosophers like W. V. Quine. The committee posthumously inducted him into their "Pantheon of Skeptics" in recognition of Nagel's contributions to the cause of scientific skepticism. Nagel was an atheist.

He died in New York. He had two sons, Alexander Nagel (professor of mathematics at the University of Wisconsin) and Sidney Nagel (professor of physics at the University of Chicago).

Nagel's doctoral students include Morton White, Patrick Suppes, Henry Kyburg, Isaac Levi, and Kenneth Schaffner.

A festschrift, Philosophy, Science and Method: Essays in Honor of Ernest Nagel, was published in 1969.