Talk:Charles Taylor (philosopher)

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Taylor is famous for his quickness of mind. He can reach a moronic conclusion faster that the rest of us dullards; qv., John Ralston Saul, and Jacques Derrida. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:00, 11 April 2005 (UTC)

Exclusive humanism[edit]

This article needs a few changes, I think. I don't have the time to do much, so I've just deleted this sentence: "His principal philosophical standpoint is that of "exclusive humanism"—a humanism without reference to the transcendent, especially as it relates to cultural, social, or political life." Taylor is actually a (Catholic) theist, although there's more to it than that. (See Stephen White's book "Sustaining Affirmation" for a discussion of Taylor's "weak ontology.")

The Hegelian aspects of his work deserve at least some mention; also, the pragmatic use of transcendental arguments. I'm not at all competent to say anything about his political career or his position on Québécois sovereignty, but those are interesting topics too.WadeMcR 06:34, 13 January 2006 (UTC)WadeMcR

The reference to Taylor's "exclusive humanism" is back again, apparently. His position needs at least a more nuanced treatment than this.-- 04:58, 2 February 2006 (UTC)
I agree that mention of his work on Hegel would be appropriate and useful. HenryV19 (talk) 19:47, 22 April 2009 (UTC)

Political stance[edit]

Something should be mentioned about his political stance (new philosophical communitarianism), beyond his NDP affiliation, his work with The New Left journal, as well as a reconsideration of considering him as an Analytic Philosopher as it's evident he is more influenced by Philosophical Hermeneutics (Gadamer/Heidegger) - as one can see from his disussion regarding horizons and prejudice - than with any Analytic philosopher. In all honesty, the only thing that strikes me as particularly analytic about Taylor is his clarity. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:31, 18 February 2006 (UTC)

Definitely he can't be considered an analytic philosopher. Certainly, he is cristal clear in his writings, but that is not enough (just as writing in english is not enough). He indulges in random free-associations (Quine's atomism showing political conservatism and viceversa), far-fetched speculation (considering continental-like ideas to have been in wittgenstein's mind though never explicited by him) and different subjects interweaving (as when science, surplus value exploitation and language structures get mixed in a single topic), three landmarks of continental philosophy. He has also criticised harshly (sometimes attacked) virtually everyone and everything (every topic) that is traditionally regarded as pertaining to APh. And, most important, his already mentioned devotion for most prominent continental philosophers, should make that category tag removed. YoungSpinoza 23:57, 1 March 2006 (UTC)


After reading YoungSpinoza's comments, and noting that the mention of "exclusive humanism" remains, I decided that a simple way to clarify the issue would be to mention Taylor's Catholicism in the article. When I read the article, I came across the title of the book "A Catholic Modernity?" and was curious to read what an "exclusive humanist" (the monicker made me assume he was an atheist) had to say on this topic. A little googling later, and I find that Taylor is Catholic, and am left annoyed that a Wikipedia article on a Catholic with a book about Catholicism to his credit doesn't mention his denominational affiliation. So I put it in. The comment above about Taylor's "weak ontology" makes me suspect that Taylor's Catholicism may be the sort of complicated and nuanced thing that would lead some to recoil from having him described as Catholic without further qualification. If you're a wikipedian about to delete the "Roman Catholic" from the article for this reason, I'd appreciate it if you could take an alternate course of action: Instead of deleting the adjective, add a paragraph about the "weak ontology" or whatever it is that you think makes the adjective ambivalent. I lack the knowledge of Taylor to do this, but I'm sure that if someone could write such a paragraph, it would make interesting reading. Thanks. Rinne na dTrosc 21:37, 4 March 2006 (UTC)

Looks like somebody deleted the "Catholic" part. Come to think of it, A Catholic Modernity? was missing from the list of Taylor's works for quite a while, until I added it. I wonder if anybody is going to have issues with the note about the Templeton Prize?--WadeMcR 06:05, 6 April 2007 (UTC)

Someone also removed him from the Roman Catholic philosophers category, despite the fact that there are literally hundreds of sources attesting to Taylor's Catholicism and its central role in his life. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tedmosby83 (talkcontribs) 19:37, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

BA and MA from Oxford[edit]

This just to note for the interests of those who make this page their responsibility: the page, on my reading, appears to imply that Taylor separately earned a BA and an MA from Oxford as degrees proper. This is not the case. As anyone familiar with the Oxbridge system will be able to confirm, Oxford and Cambridge offer terminal BAs to undergraduates which may then be subsequently upgraded to an MA following a period of X years given Y conditions (stuff like divorce, bankruptcy etc). This is why Taylor's full title is 'Taylor... BA MA...' not 'Taylor... BA BA MA'. I'm not sure what you'd care to do with this information (removing the notes which says he 'earned his MA in such-and-such a year' which is only in the vaguest sense accurate), just thought I'd pass it on. Best, Duncan. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:28, 13 August 2007 (UTC)

Edited Intro[edit]

I removed: "Although, he is also a practicing Roman Catholic, so the term 'philosopher' serves here more as a job title than a true description of Taylor as an open-minded freethinker. On 28th July 2009 Prof. Richard Dawkins famously wrote of Taylor, “Taylor accepted the Templeton Prize, which is pretty much all that needs to be said about him.”[1]"

This is not an objective description, and obviously comments made by Dawkins _today_ cannot be "famous". Even if they were they do not deserve to be in the opening paragraph. It also remains to be seen whether one can be religious and a philosopher - we don't make this critique of, say, Plato. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:33, 28 July 2009 (UTC) -- (talk) 16:42, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

It's funny actually, I had never heard of Mr.Taylor until I read that comment by Prof.Dawkins in the comments section on his website. So I looked him up on wiki and was stunned to find that someone had already inserted his comments on this page. I am a big admirer of Prof.Dawkins and his work in biology, but quite frankly there are a lot of fanatics on his website who behave like cultists. I also attempted to delete that comment, as it was merely an off-hand remark by Prof.Dawkins in the comments section of a thread on his webpage. Describing that remark as "famous" is preposterous, as is attempting to add it to this biography. CABlankenship (talk) 04:38, 29 July 2009 (UTC)

File:Charles Taylor Philosopher and Kyoto Prize Laureate.jpg Nominated for speedy Deletion[edit]

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bad external link[edit]

As elsewhere in WP, the links to the CC Reasonable Accom. report are broken - at least on this date.

Note: Library System of NB has a dearth of CT books aside from SourcSelf and SecAge.

If you have a spare copy of Lang and HA, please consider donating to Fundy or York systems.

G. Robert Shiplett 14:09, 13 October 2012 (UTC)


What does "interlocutors" mean here? Has he discussed philosophy with them? Has he appeared on panels? Have they reviewed his works, with him responding? --Richardson mcphillips (talk) 20:10, 26 October 2014 (UTC)

Making "Interlocutors" and similar sections useful[edit]

When I saw that section I had the same question as Richardson mcphillips above. I examined every article on the "interlocutors" named and from the (mere) four that actually mention Charles Taylor I concluded that these are either thinkers whose thought is discussed by Taylor or who have discussed Taylor's thought. I found four additional mentions of these interlocutors within this article itself and following a colon I have linked to the closest (sub)section ("#"-designated) containing each mention via a short description of the connection of that interlocutor to Taylor. It's easier to do than it may sound at first, all you do is click through to each interlocutor's article and use your browser search function to find any mentions of (in this case) Charles Taylor in that article, find its subsection, click on it in the contents box at top and copy the address beyond the last / in your browser address bar. Similarly, you then search (in this case) for each interlocutor's name in this article and create a similar link or links.
This started as an experiment because I thought there was very little value in naming persons whose connection to the article's subject was specified nowhere (which also makes such mentions Original Research -- see WP:NOR) and redundant where the connection was already made in the body of the article. Having made the experiment, however, I think the result is quite useful and I hope other editors will agree. I found only eight other WP articles with "Interlocutors" sections:
No subject identification other than links to subject's article:
Subject identified by specialty: ·Clyde_Kluckhohn#Interlocutors
Subject identified by dates, specialty and affilliation: ·Harvard_Department_of_Social_Relations#Interlocutors
Subject identified within a descriptive paragraph: ·Sodalitium_Christianae_Vitae#Interlocutors
The reason for this small sample of "Interlocutors" sections is obvious when you look at (for example) other philosophers' articles: It is far more common to see a "See also" section with what we here call interlocutors (i.e. those commented on by or commenting on the subject) but "See also" subsections are also used to link to more general articles (e.g. from Thales to material monism, and Know thyself) more specific (Aristotle to Aristotelian physics) or various oblique connections (Thales to "The Astrologer who Fell into a Well"). Most such "See also" subsections offer no guidance on why you would want to see the linked material either, of course. I assume there is a Wikipedia group devoted to improving philosophy articles and I will try to find it and point them to this post, and it may be of interest to other area groups as well, of course, since most of the "Interlocutors" sections I found were in other fields. Such helpful topic-identified links to article subsections may be hard to maintain in the light of article changes, of course. Perhaps a robot could be made to find (and even repair?) such broken links, or even to locate mentions of subject A in other articles (B, C, D) and list such along with mentions of B, C, D, etc. in A's article, ready to be used in Interlocutors sections. Of course editor's judgments are required to assess the significance of such links and to describe the useful connections in minimal words.
Perhaps other editors who like this proposal would mention it to those who might find it useful. I'm not sure if its more trouble than it's worth but I think it may be worth quite a bit to users. —Blanchette (talk) 00:31, 6 January 2016 (UTC)

Charles P. B. Taylor[edit]

I looked up this article thinking that Professor Taylor was the author of Radical Tories, a book on Canadian politics. A little more searching on Wikipedia told me that it was written by another Canadian author of the same name. Should there be a note at the top stating "Not to be confused with Canadian journalist Charles P. B. Taylor"? -- Mgushulak (talk) 20:44, 29 March 2015 (UTC)

I ask this because the two men have more in common than their names. Both are Canadian, both have written several books and they've lived at approximately the same time. The difference between them is not immediately apparent in the disambiguation page, and the note I suggest would dispel confusion at once. -- Mgushulak (talk) 17:46, 24 April 2015 (UTC)

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