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A Companion to Pragmatism

John R. Shook (Editor), Joseph Margolis (Editor)
ISBN: 978-1-4051-8833-3
448 pages
February 2009, Wiley-Blackwell
A Companion to Pragmatism (1405188332) cover image


A Companion to Pragmatism, comprised of 38 newly commissioned essays, provides comprehensive coverage of one of the most vibrant and exciting fields of philosophy today.

  • Unique in depth and coverage of classical figures and their philosophies as well as pragmatism as a living force in philosophy.
  • Chapters include discussions on philosophers such as John Dewey, Jürgen Habermas and Hilary Putnam.
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Table of Contents

List of Contributors viii

Preface x

Notes on Abbreviations xi

Introduction: Pragmatism, Retrospective, and Prospective 1
Joseph Margolis


1 Charles Sanders Peirce 13
Vincent M. Colapietro

2 William James 30
Ellen Kappy Suckiel

3 F. C. S. Schiller and European Pragmatism 44
John R. Shook

4 John Dewey 54
Philip W. Jackson

5 George Herbert Mead 67
Gary A. Cook

6 Jane Addams 79
Marilyn Fischer

7 Alain L. Locke 87
Leonard Harris

8 C. I. Lewis 94
Murray G. Murphey

9 W. V. Quine 101
Roger F. Gibson, Jr.

10 Hilary Putnam 108
Harvey J. Cormier

11 Jürgen Habermas 120
Joseph M. Heath

12 Richard Rorty 127
Kai Nielsen


13 Not Cynicism, but Synechism: Lessons from Classical Pragmatism 141
Susan Haack

14 Peirce and Cartesian Rationalism 154
Douglas R. Anderson

15 James, Empiricism, and Absolute Idealism 166
Timothy L. S. Sprigge

16 Hegel and Realism 177
Kenneth R. Westphal

17 Dewey, Dualism, and Naturalism 184
Thomas M. Alexander

18 Expressivism and Mead’s Social Self 193
Mitchell Aboulafia

19 Marxism and Critical Theory 202
Paulo Ghiraldelli, Jr.

20 Philosophical Hermeneutics 209
David Vessey

21 Language, Mind, and Naturalism in Analytic Philosophy 215
Bjørn T. Ramberg

22 Feminism 232
Shannon W. Sullivan

23 Pluralism, Relativism, and Historicism 239
Joseph Margolis

24 Experience as Freedom 249
John J. McDermott


25 Pragmatism as Anti-authoritarianism 257
Richard Rorty

26 Intelligence and Ethics 267
Hilary Putnam

27 Democracy and Value Inquiry 278
Ruth Anna Putnam

28 Liberal Democracy 290
Robert B. Westbrook

29 Pluralism and Deliberative Democracy: A Pragmatist Approach 301
Judith M. Green

30 Philosophy as Education 317
Jim Garrison

31 Creativity and Society 323
Hans Joas and Erkki Kilpinen

32 Religious Empiricism and Naturalism 336
Nancy K. Frankenberry

33 Aesthetics 352
Richard Shusterman

34 Aesthetic Experience and the Neurobiology of Inquiry 361
Jay Schulkin

35 Cognitive Science 369
Mark Johnson

36 Inquiry, Deliberation, and Method 378
Isaac Levi

37 Pragmatic Idealism and Metaphysical Realism 386
Nicholas Rescher

38 Scientific Realism, Anti-Realism, and Empiricism 398
Cheryl J. Misak

Name Index 410

Subject Index 420

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Author Information

John R. Shook is Vice President for Research and Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Inquiry, and Research Associate in Philosophy at the University at Buffalo. He is author of Dewey’s Empirical Theory of Knowledge and Reality (2000), editor of Pragmatic Naturalism and Realism (2003), and editor of the Dictionary of Modern American Philosophers (2005). He is also co-editor of the journal Contemporary Pragmatism.

Joseph Margolis is Laura H. Carnell Professor of Philosophy at Temple University. His recent books include The Flux of History and the Flux of Science (1993), Historied Thought, Constructed World: A Conceptual Primer for the Turn of the Millennium (1995), Interpretation Radical but Not Unruly: The New Puzzle of the Arts and History (1995), and Reinventing Pragmatism: American Philosophy at the End of the Twentieth Century (2002).

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The Wiley Advantage

  • Thirty-eight newly contributed essays provide a comprehensive and current overview of one of the most vibrant and exciting fields of philosophy today
  • Offers unique in-depth coverage of the major figures and their philosophies, among them C.S. Peirce, John Dewey, W.V. Quine, Hilary Putnam and Richard Rorty
  • Includes contributions from some of the most distinguished philosophers alive, some of whom have entries in the book devoted to them
  • Displays pragmatism as a living force in philosophy, producing original thought indebted to the founders
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“With this volume Margolis, Shook, and their collaborators celebrate the return of pragmatism to center stage of professional philosophy. Its 38 essays provide rich insights into the prospects of pragmatism as a family of methods poised to address twenty-first-century problems. Their volume is truly authoritative: its list of contributors reads like an honor roll of the field.”
Larry A. Hickman, Southern Illinois University

“This is a splendid collection of articles about the major figures of the pragmatic tradition that also exhibits the vitality and diversity of this living tradition. Essential reading for anyone interested in the rich history, lively present debates, and promising future of pragmatic themes.”
Richard J. Bernstein, New School for Social Research

“Unusually for an encyclopedic account, A Companion to Pragmatism is not afraid to adopt a particular interpretive approach. The introduction draws challenging conclusions about the relative importance of Peirce, James, and Dewey, but both the major figures covered and the themes developed in the book expand far beyond this original triumvirate and demonstrate the vitality and expansiveness of pragmatist philosophy.”
Charlene Haddock Seigfried, Purdue University

"The essays, though assuming some acquaintance with the problems and history of philosophy, are clearly written and use a minimum of jargon. A brief but excellent introduction . . . and a good set of subject and name indexes complete the scholarly apparatus. Recommended."

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