Solomon Feferman


Solomon Feferman (December 13, 1928 – July 26, 2016)[2] was an American philosopher and mathematician who worked in mathematical logic.

Solomon Feferman
Feferman Solomon.jpg
Solomon Feferman at the Association of Symbolic Logic, Pittsburgh, May 2004
Born(1928-12-13)December 13, 1928
DiedJuly 26, 2016(2016-07-26) (aged 87)
Alma materCalifornia Institute of Technology
University of California, Berkeley
EraContemporary philosophy
RegionWestern philosophy
ThesisFormal Consistency Proofs and Interpretability of Theories (1957)
Doctoral advisorAlfred Tarski
Doctoral students
Main interests
Philosophy of mathematics
Notable ideas
Stratified systems for the foundations of category theory[1]
Feferman–Schütte ordinal
Ordinal collapsing function
Explicit mathematics


Solomon Feferman was born in The Bronx in New York City to working-class parents who had immigrated to the United States after World War I and had met and married in New York. Neither parent had any advanced education. The family moved to Los Angeles, where Feferman graduated from high school at age 16.

He received his B.S. from the California Institute of Technology in 1948, and in 1957 his Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of California, Berkeley, under Alfred Tarski,[3] after having been drafted and having served in the U.S. Army from 1953 to 1955. In 1956 he was appointed to the Departments of Mathematics and Philosophy at Stanford University, where he later became the Patrick Suppes Professor of Humanities and Sciences.[4]

Feferman died on 26 July 2016 at his home in Stanford, following an illness that lasted three months and a stroke.[2][5][6] At his death, he had been a member of the MAA for 37 years.[7]


Feferman was editor-in-chief of the five-volume Collected Works of Kurt Gödel, published by Oxford University Press between 2001 and 2013.

In 2004, together with his wife Anita Burdman Feferman, he published a biography of Alfred Tarski: Alfred Tarski: Life and Logic.[8]

He worked on predicative mathematics, in particular introducing the Feferman–Schütte ordinal as a measure of the strength of certain predicative systems.


Feferman was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1972 and 1986[9] and the Rolf Schock Prize in logic and philosophy in 2003.[10] He was invited to give the Gödel Lecture in 1997[11] and the Tarski Lectures in 2006.[12] In 2012 he became a fellow of the American Mathematical Society.[13]



  • Feferman, Solomon; Vaught, Robert L. (1959), "The first order properties of products of algebraic systems", Fund. Math. 47, 57–103.
  • Feferman, Solomon (1975), "A language and axioms for explicit mathematics", Algebra and logic (Fourteenth Summer Res. Inst., Austral. Math. Soc., Monash Univ., Clayton, 1974), pp. 87–139, Lecture Notes in Math., vol. 450, Berlin, Springer.
  • Feferman, Solomon (1979), "Constructive theories of functions and classes", Logic Colloquium '78 (Mons, 1978), pp. 159–224, Stud. Logic Foundations Math., 97, Amsterdam, New York, North-Holland.
  • Buchholz, Wilfried; Feferman, Solomon; Pohlers, Wolfram; Sieg, Wilfried (1981), "Iterated inductive definitions and subsystems of analysis: recent proof-theoretical studies", Lecture Notes in Mathematics, 897, Berlin, New York, Springer-Verlag.
  • Feferman, Solomon; Hellman, Geoffrey (1995), "Predicative foundations of arithmetic", J. Philos. Logic 24 (1), 1–17.
  • Avigad, Jeremy; Feferman, Solomon (1998), "Gödel's functional (Dialectica) interpretation", Handbook of proof theory, 337–405, Stud. Logic Found. Math., 137, Amsterdam, North-Holland.


  • Feferman, Solomon. (1998). In the Light of Logic. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-508030-0, Logic and Computation in Philosophy series.[14]
  • Feferman, Anita Burdman; Feferman, Solomon (2004). Alfred Tarski: Life and Logic. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-80240-6. OCLC 54691904.[8]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Enriched Stratified systems for the Foundations of Category Theory" by Solomon Feferman (2011)
  2. ^ a b "Solomon Feferman (1928-2016)".
  3. ^ Solomon Feferman at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  4. ^ "Solomon Feferman's homepage". Archived from the original on October 24, 2017.
  5. ^ Lanier Anderson, R. (August 4, 2016). "A tribute to Solomon Feferman (1928–2016)". Archived from the original on September 11, 2016. Retrieved July 24, 2021.
  6. ^ "Stanford mathematical logician Solomon Feferman dies at 87". Stanford News. October 7, 2016. Retrieved July 24, 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ "In Memoriam | Mathematical Association of America". Retrieved July 24, 2021.
  8. ^ a b Reviews of Alfred Tarski:
    • Dauben, Joseph W. (2005), Mathematical Reviews, MR 2095748{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Anellis, Irving H. (2005), "Review", The Review of Modern Logic, 10 (1–2): 117–130
    • Davis, Philip J. (March 2005), "A life of logic and the illogic of life", SIAM News
    • Davis, Martin (March–April 2005), "The Man Who Defined Truth", American Scientist, 93 (2): 175–177, JSTOR 27858554
    • Shell-Gellasch, Amy (May 2005), "Review", MAA Reviews
    • Misiuna, Krystyna (May 2005), History and Philosophy of Logic, 26 (2): 166–168, doi:10.1080/01445340412331313602, S2CID 216590845{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Mendelson, Elliott (June 2005), Philosophia Mathematica, 13 (2): 231–232, doi:10.1093/philmat/nki020{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Kilmister, C. W. (July 2005), The Mathematical Gazette, 89 (515): 330–331, doi:10.1017/S0025557200177988, JSTOR 3621256, S2CID 171454519{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Schmit, Roger (Fall 2005), Archives de Philosophie, 68 (3): 546–547, JSTOR 43038344{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Maddux, Roger D. (December 2005), The Bulletin of Symbolic Logic, 11 (4): 535–540, doi:10.1017/S1079898600003000, JSTOR 3396716, S2CID 124002889{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Kybernetes, 35 (1/2), January 2006, doi:10.1108/k.2006.06735aae.002{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Lescanne, Pierre (March 2006), ACM SIGACT News, 37 (1): 27, doi:10.1145/1122480.1122489, S2CID 9529607{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Carnielli, Walter (March 2006), Logic and Logical Philosophy, 15 (1), doi:10.12775/llp.2006.005{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Wood, Carol (April 2006), The American Mathematical Monthly, 113 (4): 377–379, doi:10.2307/27641942, JSTOR 27641942{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Oberdan, Thomas (June 2006), Isis, 97 (2): 362–363, doi:10.1086/507375, JSTOR 10.1086/507375{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Grattan-Guinness, Ivor (September 2006), The British Journal for the History of Science, 39 (3): 469–470, doi:10.1017/S0007087406438681, JSTOR 4028507{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Apt, Krzysztof R. (March 2007), "Alfred Tarski: life and logic", The Mathematical Intelligencer, 29 (2): 78–80, doi:10.1007/bf02986214, S2CID 189883846
    • Sinaceur, Hourya Benis (September 2007), "Review" (PDF), Notices of the American Mathematical Society, 54 (8): 986–989
    • Bassols, Alejandro Tomasini (April 2006), Crítica: Revista Hispanoamericana de Filosofía, 38 (112): 105–111, JSTOR 40104969{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Brown, Scott H. (March 2009), The Mathematics Teacher, 102 (7): 558, JSTOR 20876430{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Bremer, Manuel (December 2009), "Review", Philosophy in Review, 29 (6): 404
    • Nerode, Anil (March 2010), The American Mathematical Monthly, 117 (3): 286–288, doi:10.4169/000298910x480144, JSTOR 10.4169/000298910x480144, S2CID 218549336{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Czernecka-Rej, Bożena (2011), Roczniki Filozoficzne, 59 (1): 79–84, JSTOR 43408916{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
  9. ^ "John Simon Guggenheim Foundation | Solomon Feferman".
  10. ^ "Feferman awarded Rolf Schock Prize in logic and philosophy".
  11. ^ "Gödel Lecturers – Association for Symbolic Logic". Retrieved November 8, 2021.
  12. ^ "The Tarski Lectures | Department of Mathematics at University of California Berkeley". Retrieved November 8, 2021.
  13. ^ List of Fellows of the American Mathematical Society, retrieved December 2, 2012.
  14. ^ Reviews of In the Light of Logic:
    • Avigad, Jeremy (December 1999), "[Untitled]", The Journal of Philosophy, 96 (12): 638–642, doi:10.2307/2564698, JSTOR 2564698
    • Antonelli, G. Aldo (June 2001), The Bulletin of Symbolic Logic, 7 (2): 270–277, doi:10.2307/2687778, JSTOR 2687778, S2CID 122751203{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)
    • Mendelson, E. (2001), Mathematical Reviews, MR 1661162{{citation}}: CS1 maint: untitled periodical (link)

External linksEdit