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Pluralism in Theory and Practice: Richard McKeon and American Philosophy (The Vanderbilt Library of American Philosophy) Hardcover – July 31, 2000

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Product Details

  • Series: The Vanderbilt Library of American Philosophy
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Vanderbilt University Press; 1st edition (July 31, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0826513409
  • ISBN-13: 978-0826513403
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,826,350 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


This outstanding collection of essays establishes Richard McKeon as perhaps the most important philosopher of his generation and the thinker most fitted to ours. It is the most articulate and intelligent statement of true philosophical pluralism to date.
--Thomas Conley, University of Illinois

Richard McKeon was one of the most profound and brilliant philosophers of the twentieth century. Pluralism in Theory and Practice offers valuable clarifications and appreciations of the work of this unduly neglected but major thinker.
--Alan Gewirth, University of Chicago

About the Author

Eugene Garver is Regents Professor of Philosophy at St. John's University and author of Aristotle's Rhetoric: An Art of Character (1994).

Richard Buchanan is professor of design and head of the School of Design at Carnegie Mellon University and is author of Discovering Design: Explorations in Design Studies (1995).

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By David C. Young on June 27, 2010
Format: Hardcover
In old-style academia, on retirement a distinguished professor received a festshrift, a published collection of writings in his honor by his students & colleagues. McKeon was, indeed, a truly distinguished professor -- a brilliant, even monumental scholar as a radical philosopher, an innovative educator and a stunning historian of philosophy, not to mention a polymath: he published articles in 5 languages, and could likely have published in both Latin & ancient Greek, as he was also a professor of Greek and his sight-translations of Latin were legendary.

Ah, but McKeon was also a fearsome professor. Still teaching when I attended The University of Chicago in the 1970's, he had a reputation of not suffering anything less than genius. I recall that his students of my acquaintence all had a hang-dog look, definitely beaten down, a reputation enhanced by Robert Pirsig's "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance", where he was the nefarious & much dreaded "Professor". I've rather gathered, from things I heard here & there, that any attempt by students or colleagues to critique his writing, during his lifetime, met with stern objections about misunderstanding him. And frankly, his writings can be as fearsome as he was. Richard Buchannan, one of this book's editors, wrote of McKeon's "distinctive style of thought and expression that characterizes his writings: an architecture of ideas and words that often puzzles the first-time reader and leaves no one indifferent to its effect. To read McKeon requires uncommon discipline and concentration." (p. 138) Amen.

So after some 150 articles and 11 books spanning 7 decades, dying in 1985, McKeon was festshrift-less.
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