Throughout the time Meehl and I were corresponding about hermeneutics and related matters, two of his colleagues, C. Anthony Anderson and Keith Gunderson, were assembling a collection of Meehl’s philosophical and methodological papers for possible publication by the University of Minnesota Press. The editors of the Press asked the philosopher Wesley Salmon to referee the submission, and Salmon’s remarks appeared later in a foreword to the book:
This collection of essays is a veritable goldmine. I had previously read a number of them—though by no means all—but rereading them brought back vividly the range and profundity of Meehl’s work as well as the sheer delight of his writing style. This collection should be published, and it should be required reading for anyone seriously interested in such areas as philosophy of mind, philosophy of psychology, artificial intelligence, methodology of the social sciences, as well as such specific topics as the foundations of statistics, psychoanalysis, free will, moral responsibility, determinism, punishment, rehabilitation, and ESP.
15The world is full of scientists—especially senior scientists—in the physical, biological, and behavioral sciences who are eager to talk and write about the philosophy of their particular branch of science. The vast majority of them do it very badly. Paul Meehl is an outstanding—perhaps the outstanding—exception to that general rule. There are two main reasons. First, he is extraordinarily learned in philosophy, having mastered the thought of a wide variety of important thinkers. Second, he has a superb gift for philosophy, especially philosophy of science. He has benefited from and contributed to the Minnesota Center for Philosophy of Science in important ways over a period of several decades. Whe n he philosophizes, philosopher s an d psychologists should listen. For example, in essays 2-7, he makes profound contributions to the age-old discussions of freedom of will and its relationship (or lack thereof) to determinism, and the mind-body problem. The great strength of these discussions arises in large part from his philosophically knowledgeable application of scientific details from psychology and neurophysiology to these problems…. I cannot praise this collection of essays too highly. They are clearly the product of a superb intellect ranging over a broad sweep of areas and issues. And, they are fun to read.
From: Anderson, C. A., & Gunderson, K. (Eds.). (1991). Paul E. Meehl: Selected philosophical and methodological papers (pp. vii–viii, xiv). Minneapolis, MN : University of Minnesota Press. Reprinted by permission.