Appiah, Pettit lauded as 'great thinkers'

The French-language weekly news magazine Le Nouvel Observateur has named Princeton professors Kwame Anthony Appiah and Philip Pettit two of the 25 greatest thinkers in the world today.

In its Dec. 29, 2004, issue, which celebrates its 40th anniversary, the magazine lauds Appiah as an "ambassador of universalism," and hails Pettit as a "holistic individualist." The full list includes other philosophers, social theorists and critics from across the globe.

Appiah, the Laurance S. Rockefeller University Professor of Philosophy and the University Center for Human Values, specializes in moral and political philosophy, African and African-American studies, and issues of personal and political identity, multiculturalism and nationalism. A native of Ghana, Appiah joined the Princeton faculty in 2002.

Appiah is the author of numerous award-winning books, including "The Ethics of Identity," which was published in January by Princeton University Press; "Color Conscious: The Political Morality of Race" (with Amy Gutmann); and "In My Father's House: Africa in the Philosophy of Culture." He also is co-editor, with Henry Louis Gates Jr., of "Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African-American Experience," a revised version of which is due to be published by Oxford University Press in March.

Pettit, the William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Politics and the University Center for Human Values, has wide-ranging intellectual interests that include the philosophy of cognitive and social science as well as moral and political theory. A native of Ireland, Pettit joined the Princeton faculty in 2002.

Pettit's recent books include "Mind, Morality and Explanation" (with Frank Jackson and Michael Smith); "The Economy of Esteem: An Essay on Civil and Political Society" (with Geoffrey Brennan); "Rules, Reasons and Norms: Selected Essays"; and "A Theory of Freedom: From the Psychology to the Politics of Agency."