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The Gödel Editorial Project - A synopsis



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The G del Editorial Project A synopsis Solomon Feferman1 The final two volumes numbers IV and V of the Oxford University Press edition of the Collected Works of Kurt G del 3 7 appeared in 2003 thus completing a project that started over twenty years earlier What I mainly want to do here is trace from the vantage point of my personal involvement the at some times halting and at other times intense development of the G del editorial project from the first initiatives following G del s death in 1978 to its completion last year It may be useful to scholars mounting similar editorial projects for other significant figures in our field to learn how and why various decisions were made and how the work was carried out though of course much is particular to who and what we were dealing with My hope here is also to give the reader who is not already familiar with the G del Works a sense of what has been gained in the process and to encourage dipping in according to interest Given the absolute importance of G del for mathematical logic students should also be pointed to these important source materials to experience first hand the exercise of his genius and the varied ways of his thought and to see how scholarly and critical studies help to expand their significance Though indeed much has been gained in our work there is still much that can and should be done besides some indications below for that the reader is referred to 2 1 Early initiatives and serendipitous events In the first years after G del died there was considerable discussion in the Association for Symbolic Logic as to how best to pay tribute to the greatest logician of our time and to do it in a way that would have scientific and historical value as well In 1979 Hilary Putnam then president of the Association appointed a committee consisting of George Boolos chair Burton Dreben and Warren Goldfarb whose aim was to produce an edition of G del s publications as well as to see if further publishable materials could



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