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Peter K. Machamer (d. May 31, 2023) was a renowned mechanistic philosopher and historian of science. Peter was Professor of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh for nearly 40 years. His research focused on 17th-century history of philosophy and science, on Galileo Galilei and René Descartes in particular, and on values and science. He was a globe-trotting visiting professor and a Fulbright scholar. Peter was a voluminous author and had over 100 academic articles, books, and book reviews. He co-authored of one of the most highly cited science philosophy articles in his field(“Thinking About Mechanisms”). Peter earned his BA from Columbia University, his BA and MA from Trinity College, Cambridge University, and his PhD in philosophy from the University of Chicago.
Peter was a wine columnist for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for fifteen years and reflected on wine, beer, and culture in philosophical writing, with over 700 popular newspaper and magazine articles; he was a bon vivant and larger than life character. He was an influential presence in the international and local wine communities as a judge and consultant. Peter was also the "Philosopher in Residence" for the Pittsburgh dance company Attack Theatre.
Son of Roswell Wenner Machamer and Gene (Kennedy).Beloved Husband and soulmate of Barbara Diven Machamer.Loving Father to Blake (Ginni), Mignonne Rebecca Stanley (Chris), Amanda Becker (Robert Westmont), Tara Gainfort (Burlton Griffith), and Michael Gainfort. Adored Papa ofRachel, Courtney, Nico (Everett), Lauren, Samantha, and Ezra. Brother to Lance (Nancy), Wendy Walsh (John Weed), and JulieFarabee (Dave). Dear Uncle to many nieces and nephews. Academic advisor to more than 30 doctoral students and influential mentor to innumerable students. Friend to many.
The family will hold a private funeral ceremony. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a charitable donation to Humane Animal Rescue or The Pittsburgh Promise.