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Alfred Tarski and the “Concept of truth in formalized languages”. A running commentary with consideration of the Polish original and the German translation. (English) Zbl 1362.03002
Logic, Epistemology, and the Unity of Science 39. Cham: Springer (ISBN 978-3-319-32614-6/hbk; 978-3-319-32616-0/ebook). xii, 187 p. (2016).
The book is devoted to Tarski’s famous monograph on truth. Its aim is to compare the Polish original version (1933; JFM 58.1001.01; Zbl 0004.00101), the German translation (1935; Zbl 0013.28903; JFM 62.1051.05)) and the English translation (1956; Zbl 0075.00702) and to indicate discrepancies between them. The publication is based on the author’s dissertation written at the University of Salzburg. It is meant to be read parallel to the English edition as a kind of manual or guide for better comprehension of the text.
It is organized in the following way: Chapter 1 “Introduction” is devoted to explanations of the main methodological issues.
The core of the book is Chapter 2 “Commentary”. It is ordered by the pages of the English version of Tarski’s paper. It starts with a brief summary of the page. It is followed by a commentary to the page. It includes a discussion of the divergences of the content between the three versions of Tarski’s article, as well as an analysis of the questions emerging from the content, not related to the translations but concerning all of the versions. There are also certain explanations of Tarski’s text. The reader is usually directed towards more comprehensive literature. One finds there also translational remarks to each page. Often, the accurate translation is suggested.
Chapter 3 contains some comments. The book closes Chapter 4 in which a till now unpublished collection of certain letters (from the archive of Polish Philosophical Society in Poznań, Poland) is given which concern the translation of Tarski’s paper. Most of the letters were exchanged between Tarski and Kazimierz Twardowski but there are also letters from Karl Popper. Copies of those letters are reproduced and they (letters in Polish or in German) are translated into English. They were translated literally to preserve their original flair as much as possible.
One should add that the author of the book under review was prepared very well to do this job since Polish is her native language. The book is thought as auxiliary means for all scholars having the expertise in the subject but lacking the knowledge of Polish. It will be helpful also to philosophy students of all levels.

MSC:
03-03 History of mathematical logic and foundations
03-02 Research exposition (monographs, survey articles) pertaining to mathematical logic and foundations
03A05 Philosophical and critical aspects of logic and foundations
01A75 Collected or selected works; reprintings or translations of classics
01A60 History of mathematics in the 20th century
00A30 Philosophy of mathematics
Biographic References:
Tarski, Alfred
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