[A. J. Ayer [Sir Alfred Jules ‘Freddie’ Ayer], logical positivist philosopher, Wykeham Professorship in Logic at Oxford.] Three Typed Letters Signed to Philip Dosse of Hansom Books, regarding review work for ‘Books and Bookmen’.

A. J. Ayer [Sir Alfred Jules ‘Freddie’ Ayer] (1910-1989), logical positivist philosopher, Wykeham Professorship in Logic at Oxford [Philip Dosse (c.1924-1980), proprietor of ‘Books and Bookmen']
Publication details: 
4 February, 18 April and 18 October 1974. All three on letterhead of 10 Regents Park Terrace, London NW1.
SKU: 25398

See Richard Wollheim’s appreciative entry on Ayer in the Oxford DNB. From the archives of Philip Dosse, proprietor of Hansom Books, publisher of the ‘Seven Arts’ group of magazines, including ‘Books and Bookmen’ and ‘Plays and Players’. See ‘Death of a Bookman’ by the novelist Sally Emerson (editor of ‘Books and Bookmen’ at the time of Dosse’s suicide), in Standpoint magazine, October 2018. The three items are each 1p, small 4to. All three in good condition, each folded twice. All three signed ‘A. J. Ayer’, with typed name beneath, ‘Sir Alfred Ayer’. ONE (4 February 1974): He feared that ‘Professor Wiggins would refuse’ (to write a review), but is ‘very glad to hear that you have managed to secure Dr Roger Poole, and much look forward to reading his review. Indeed, I should be grateful if you would send me a copy when it appears.’ TWO (18 April 1974): The delayed reply is due to his having ‘been away in Bulgaria and Yugoslavia’. Although he enjoyed the copies of Books and Bookmen which Dosse sent him, he has ‘had so much other work to cope with that I have not had time to more than glance at the book’. As Dosse ‘said there was no hurry’, he asks whether he may let him know ‘whether or not I think it worth reviewing’. Regarding the ‘reasonable fee’ that Dosse said he would pay, Ayer refers him to his agent. THREE (18 October 1974): He is enclosing (not present) his review of ‘Mr Mackie’s and Dr Hesse’s books with apologies for having taken rather long over it’. As Dosse will see, Ayer ‘could not avoid being a little bit technical but I think that the greater part of the review should be intelligible to your readers’. See Image on one.