The author is David Edmonds, and the subtitle is The Rise and Fall of the Vienna Circle. I very much enjoyed this book, and found its direct style refreshing, and I hope it will serve as a model for others. The author actually tells you what you want to know!
I enjoyed the small tidbits. I had not known that Frank Ramsey traveled to Vienna for psychoanalysis, because he was in love with a married woman his senior. Ramsey ended up drinking the Freudian Kool-Aid, and also in Vienna became acquainted with Wittgenstein’s sister Gretl.
I had forgotten that Quine was two years the senior of A.J. Ayer. He also spoke sarcastically of his forthcoming audience with Wittgenstein but sought it nonetheless. Quine learned German remarkably quickly in Vienna, and then was lecturing philosophy in it without much difficulty.
Karl Popper was first an apprentice cabinetmaker, then a social worker, and then a teacher before he became a professional philosopher. When he moved to New Zealand during the War, the university library in Otago had fewer books than his father’s library back home.
You can pre-order the book here.