1st Edition

Pragmatism and the European Traditions Encounters with Analytic Philosophy and Phenomenology before the Great Divide

Edited By Maria Baghramian, Sarin Marchetti Copyright 2018
    306 Pages
    by Routledge

    306 Pages
    by Routledge

    The turn of the twentieth century witnessed the birth of two distinct philosophical schools in Europe: analytic philosophy and phenomenology. The history of 20th-century philosophy is often written as an account of the development of one or both of these schools, as well as their overt or covert mutual hostility. What is often left out of this history, however, is the relationship between the two European schools and a third significant philosophical event: the birth and development of pragmatism, the indigenous philosophical movement of the United States. Through a careful analysis of seminal figures and central texts, this book explores the mutual intellectual influences, convergences, and differences between these three revolutionary philosophical traditions. The essays in this volume aim to show the central role that pragmatism played in the development of philosophical thought at the turn of the twentieth century, widen our understanding of a seminal point in the history of philosophy, and shed light on the ways in which these three schools of thought continue to shape the theoretical agenda of contemporary philosophy.

    Philosophy in the Twentieth Century: The Mingled Story of Three Revolutions

    Maria Baghramian and Sarin Marchetti

    Part I: Early Encounters

    1. Husserl and Wittgenstein: Two Very Different but Potentially Complementary Readings of William James

    Richard Cobb-Stevens

    2. How to Marry Phenomenology and Pragmatism: Scheler’s Proposal

    Kevin Mulligan

    3. Pragmatic and Analytic Evasions of Idealism: James and Wittgenstein on Conduct and Practice

    Colin Koopman

    4. Other Minds and God: Russell and Stout on James and Schiller

    Tim Button

    5. Russell, Pragmatism, and the Priority of Use Over Meaning

    James Levine

    6. Peirce and Ramsey on Truths and Norms

    Cheryl Misak

    7. Wittgenstein and Pragmatism: A Neglected Remark in Manuscript 107 (1930)

    Anna Boncompagni

    Part II: Later Encounters

    8. The Pragmatic Origins of Ethical Expressivism: Stevenson, Dewey, and the International Encyclopedia of Unified Science

    John Capps

    9. The Analytic Pragmatist Conception of the A Priori: C. I. Lewis and Wilfrid Sellars

    James O’Shea

    10. In Defense of Wishful Thinking: James, Quine, Emotions, and the Web of Belief

    Alexander Klein

    11. Logical Empiricism Between Pragmatism and Neopragmatism

    Sami Pihlström

    12. Phenomenology and Pragmatism: Two Interactions. From Horizontal Intentionality to Practical Coping

    Dermot Moran


    Maria Baghramian is Professor of American Philosophy at University College Dublin and current Head of School of Philosophy. She was elected a Member of the Royal Irish Academy in 2010 and was Fulbright Scholar in Harvard in 2014. Her research and publications, supported by the Irish Research Council, focus on Contemporary American Philosophy and the topics of relativism and disagreement.

    Sarin Marchetti is Assistant Professor at Sapienza Università di Roma, where he teaches Moral Theories. He has written on ethics, metaphilosophy, Pragmatism, and the History of Analytic Philosophy. He is the author of Ethics and Philosophical Critique in William James (2015) and co-editor of Facts and Values: The Ethics and Metaphysics of Normativity (with G. Marchetti, 2016).

    "American pragmatism saw itself as the culmination of a process of naturalizing Kant and Hegel in the direction of an empiricism focused on selectional developmental processes of the sort epitomized by evolution and individual learning. This naturalizing, historicizing process was in many ways rudely interrupted by Russell and Husserl, each in his own way inventing something philosophy could be apodeictic about from its armchair. This fascinating volume provides a novel perspective on the familiar twentieth century opposition between analytic philosophy and phenomenology, by viewing those traditions through the mediating lens of their interactions with contemporaneous pragmatism."Robert Brandom, University of Pittsburgh, USA

    "Whether through Husserl’s adaptations of James’s psychology, Ramsey’s refinements of Peirce’s account of truth, Russell’s adaptation of James’s radical empiricism, or the later Wittgenstein’s emphasis on concrete human life, two divergent traditions of twentieth century philosophy—phenomenology and analytic philosophy—were influenced by the pragmatists. The rich and varied essays in this collection break new ground not only in charting these and other pragmatic influences, but in helping us understand pragmatism’s vitality today".Russell B. Goodman, University of New Mexico, USA

    "Pragmatism and the European Tradition is an exemplary specimen of a new kind of collection of philosophical essays. It reviews, with a considerable range and expertise and fresh detail, the sources of doctrinal dissatisfaction involving intractable quarrels between analytic and continental philosophy (chiefly positivism and phenomenology) and the prospects of conceptual mediation by way of pragmatism. Quite a good idea. That’s to say, philosophical rivals must now demonstrate a measure of dialectical skill in reconciling once insurmountable doctrinal divisions. Repays a careful reading."Joseph Margolis, Temple University, USA

    "This collection offers a scholarly and timely corrective to the prevailing narrative of early 20th-century philosophy. According to that narrative, analytic philosophy and phenomenology marginalized pragmatism and never engaged with pragmatism. The essays in this collection show that narrative to rely on either neglecting or misreading important figures. At a time when the very ‘divide’ between analytic and Continental philosophy is being closely scrutinized from multiple perspectives, this book further complicates the story in productive ways."Carl B. Sachs, Marymount University, USA