42 Facts About Alvin Plantinga


From 1963 to 1982, Plantinga taught at Calvin University before accepting an appointment as the John A O'Brien Professor of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame.

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Alvin Plantinga later returned to Calvin University to become the inaugural holder of the Jellema Chair in Philosophy.

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Prominent Christian philosopher, Alvin Plantinga served as president of the Society of Christian Philosophers from 1983 to 1986.

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Alvin Plantinga has delivered the Gifford Lectures two times and was described by Time magazine as "America's leading orthodox Protestant philosopher of God".

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In 2014, Alvin Plantinga was the 30th most-cited contemporary author in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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Alvin Plantinga's father was a first-generation immigrant, born in the Netherlands.

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Alvin Plantinga's family is from the Dutch province of Friesland; they lived on a relatively low income until he secured a teaching job in Michigan in 1941.

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Alvin Plantinga's father earned a PhD in philosophy from Duke University and a master's degree in psychology, and taught several academic subjects at different colleges over the years.

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Alvin Plantinga's older daughter, Jane Alvin Plantinga Pauw, is a pastor at Rainier Beach Presbyterian Church in Seattle, Washington, and his younger daughter, Ann Kapteyn, is a missionary in Cameroon working for Wycliffe Bible Translators.

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Alvin Plantinga reluctantly followed his father's advice and in 1949, a few months before his 17th birthday, he enrolled in Jamestown College, in Jamestown, North Dakota.

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In January 1950, Plantinga moved to Grand Rapids with his family and enrolled in Calvin University.

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In 1951, during Harvard's spring recess, Plantinga attended a few philosophy classes at Calvin University, and was so impressed with Calvin philosophy professor William Harry Jellema that he returned in 1951 to study philosophy under him.

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In 1954, Alvin Plantinga began his graduate studies at the University of Michigan where he studied under William Alston, William Frankena, and Richard Cartwright, among others.

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Alvin Plantinga began his career as an instructor in the philosophy department at Yale in 1957, and then in 1958, he became a professor of philosophy at Wayne State University during its heyday as a major center for analytic philosophy.

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Alvin Plantinga then spent the next 19 years at Calvin before moving to the University of Notre Dame in 1982.

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Alvin Plantinga retired from the University of Notre Dame in 2010 and returned to Calvin University, where he serves as the first holder of the William Harry Jellema Chair in Philosophy.

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Alvin Plantinga has trained many prominent philosophers working in metaphysics and epistemology including Michael Bergmann at Purdue and Michael Rea at Notre Dame, and Trenton Merricks working at University of Virginia.

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Alvin Plantinga served as president of the American Philosophical Association, Western Division, from 1981 to 1982.

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Alvin Plantinga has honorary degrees from Glasgow University, Calvin University (1986), North Park College (1994), the Free University of Amsterdam (1995), Brigham Young University (1996), and Valparaiso University (1999).

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Alvin Plantinga has argued that some people can know that God exists as a basic belief, requiring no argument.

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Alvin Plantinga developed this argument in two different fashions: firstly, in God and Other Minds, by drawing an equivalence between the teleological argument and the common sense view that people have of other minds existing by analogy with their own minds.

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Alvin Plantinga has developed a more comprehensive epistemological account of the nature of warrant which allows for the existence of God as a basic belief.

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Alvin Plantinga has argued that there is no logical inconsistency between the existence of evil and the existence of an all-powerful, all-knowing, wholly good God.

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Alvin Plantinga proposed a "free-will defense" in a volume edited by Max Black in 1965, which attempts to refute the logical problem of evil, the argument that the existence of evil is logically incompatible with the existence of an omnipotent, omniscient, holy good God.

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Alvin Plantinga's well-received book God, Freedom and Evil, written in 1974, gave his response to what he saw as the incomplete and uncritical view of theism's criticism of theodicy.

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Alvin Plantinga's contribution stated that when the issue of a comprehensive doctrine of freedom is added to the discussion of the goodness of God and the omnipotence of God then it is not possible to exclude the presence of evil in the world after introducing freedom into the discussion.

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Alvin Plantinga's externalist epistemology, called "proper functionalism", is a form of epistemological reliabilism.

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Alvin Plantinga discusses his view of Reformed epistemology and proper functionalism in a three-volume series.

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Alvin Plantinga explains his argument for proper function with reference to a "design plan", as well as an environment in which one's cognitive equipment is optimal for use.

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Alvin Plantinga asserts that the design plan does not require a designer: "it is perhaps possible that evolution has somehow furnished us with our design plans", but the paradigm case of a design plan is like a technological product designed by a human being (like a radio or a wheel).

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Ultimately, Plantinga argues that epistemological naturalism- i e epistemology that holds that warrant is dependent on natural faculties—is best supported by supernaturalist metaphysics—in this case, the belief in a creator God or designer who has laid out a design plan that includes cognitive faculties conducive to attaining knowledge.

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Alvin Plantinga discusses his evolutionary argument against naturalism in the later chapters of Warrant and Proper Function.

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Alvin Plantinga has expressed a modal logic version of the ontological argument in which he uses modal logic to develop, in a more rigorous and formal way, Norman Malcolm's and Charles Hartshorne's modal ontological arguments.

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Alvin Plantinga criticized Malcolm's and Hartshorne's arguments, and offered an alternative.

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Alvin Plantinga argued that, if Malcolm does prove the necessary existence of the greatest possible being, it follows that there is a being which exists in all worlds whose greatness in some worlds is not surpassed.

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Alvin Plantinga then restated Malcolm's argument, using the concept of "maximal greatness".

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Alvin Plantinga argued that it is possible for a being with maximal greatness to exist, so a being with maximal greatness exists in a possible world.

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Alvin Plantinga argued that, although the first premise is not rationally established, it is not contrary to reason.

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Martin proposed parodies of the argument, suggesting that the existence of anything can be demonstrated with Alvin Plantinga's argument, provided it is defined as perfect or special in every possible world.

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Alvin Plantinga stated that one only has the epistemic right to accept the premise if one understands the nested modal operators, and that if one understands them within the system S5—without which the argument fails—then one understands that "possibly necessarily" is in essence the same as "necessarily".

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Alvin Plantinga said in an interview on the relationship between science and religion that:.

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Alvin Plantinga was a Fellow of the pro-intelligent design International Society for Complexity, Information, and Design, and has presented at a number of intelligent design conferences.

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