In the spring of 2007 the distinguished American philosopher John Searle visited a class for a discussion with graduate students who had been studying some of his writings in a course devoted to his work in philosophy. John Searle is the Slusser Professor of Philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley and one of the leading philosophers in the world. He was educated at the University of Wisconsin and received a B.A., M.A. and D.Phil. from Oxford University. He has received honorary degrees from the University of Lugano, University of Torino, University of Bucharest, Adelphi University, and University of Wisconsin. He has also received numerous awards including the Jean Nicod Prize in France, the Puffendorf Medal in Sweden, The Jovellanos Prize in Spain, the Tasan Award in Korea, and the National Humanities Medal in the United States. He was a past president of the American Philosophical Association. Although Professor Searle has taught at the University of California since 1959, he has also been a visiting professor at dozens of universities including the Sorbonne, the Catholic University of Lublin, Charles University in Prague, Syracuse University, University of Aarhus in Denmark, University of Toronto, University of Florence, the University of Oslo. He has given hundreds of lectures at colleges and universities throughout North and South America, Europe, and Asia.
Searle's early work, which to a great extent established his reputation as a philosopher, was on speech acts or illocutionary acts. This topic was further developed in his later work on intentionality. Building still further on his work on intentionality, Searle presented a critique of behaviorism arguing for the existence of consciousness in a book entitled The Rediscovery of the Mind; a work also critical of artificial intelligence. Searle also works in the area of social philosophy in which he developed the notion of collective intentionality as distinct form and not reducible to individual intentionality. His more recent work focuses on the nature of rationality. He is the author of numerous books including:
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