Robert Charles Pinto
With great sadness we announce the death on September 3rd, 2019, of our esteemed colleague and friend, Bob Pinto. Bob was an active Fellow of the Centre until illness forced his absence in the last few years.
Bob was schooled in the history of philosophy at St. Michael’s College in the University of Toronto and in contemporary analytic philosophy in the Ph.D. program at Toronto, where he wrote a dissertation in epistemology. He was also widely read in 20th century continental philosophy. He spent his career at the University of Windsor, starting in 1963. He had friends and acquaintances in virtually every faculty and school of the University, and from the University President to the clerks in the mail room. He served as president of the faculty association and as its chief negotiator for several contracts that saw increased benefits and avoided strikes. He created a computer program for the faculty to record and calculate students’ grades, “Class Record”, that was adopted by the University.
Bob became interested in informal logic in the 1980s at the urging of his colleagues, Ralph Johnson and Tony Blair, and he published in the field for 20 years. His collected papers on informal logic, Argument, Inference and Dialectic (Kluwer, 1991), is required reading. (A list of his publications may be found elsewhere on this website.)
Bob had a prodigious acquaintance with and memory for the history of philosophy, and it is a sad irony that the neuro-degenerative ravages of Alzheimer’s robbed him of this gift in his last years. He will be remembered by his colleagues for his genuine friendliness and kindness as well as for his significant contributions to informal logic. As one colleague expressed it, “He was a lovely man, and a very smart one.” We mourn his passing.