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Pragmatism, Postmodernism and the Future of Philosophy (Routledge American Philosophy Series) Paperback – November 29, 2002

ISBN-13: 978-0415939683 ISBN-10: 0415939682

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Product Details

  • Series: Routledge American Philosophy Series
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge (November 29, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415939682
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415939683
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 6.2 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,514,518 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

John J. Stuhr is Professor of Philosophy at Pennsylvania State University and head of the department. He has authored and edited numerous books including Genealogical Pragmatism and Pragmatism and Classical American Philosophy, and is Chief Editor of the Routledge American Philosophy Series.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By John H. Teeple on June 28, 2004
Format: Paperback
John Stuhr has quickly become one of my favorite contemporary interpreters of the pragmatist tradition. This book (as well as his earlier "Genealogical Pragmatism") has deepened my interest and confidence in pragmatism. Stuhr in fact makes it look easy - pragmatism simply is the most honest option.

What really strikes me as unusual or compelling or valuable is Stuhr's insistence that pragmatism be a living philosophy. This means that it must be alive - responsive to its environment, open to change and evolution - and that that it must be liveable, or responsive to the real needs of real people. Stuhr's work is not, then, strictly "academic." He has learned well the lessons of James and Dewey, and seeks to move beyond their basic insights. (This of course is one of Dewey's central lessons - philosophy must change and grow!) And he does so in ways that are quite original, creative, and in fact (at times) enjoyable.

Stuhr has a solid grasp of pragmatism. He cogently discusses James and Dewey, of course, but also displays a solid understanding of less well-known American philosophers such as William Hocking and George Santayana. He is well aware of divisions within the pragmatist tradition - interpreting Hocking's "negative pragmatism" as a necessary and valuable criticism of the melioristic and progressive strains of American thought, for example. He also demonstrates (with mixed success) the similarities, parallels, intersections, and divisions amongst pragmatism and several lines of "postmodern" thought. He discusses explicitly Adorno, Foucault, and Deleuze/Guattari as representative postmodern thinkers.

His chapter on Foucault is the most successful of these attempts.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 24, 2004
Format: Paperback
I just finished reading this book for an undergraduate senior seminar. I was not looking forward to it because the other books assigned for the seminar were technically proficient but lifeless and irrelevant to the world I live in. But this book blew me away--I even read parts of it three of four times. The author is the most amazingly direct and engaging philosopher I have encountered, and the issues that he raises about education, politics, pluralism, and spirituality will keep me occupied for years to come, I imagine. The chapters that take up the philosophies of William James and John Dewey and Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze are the most remarkable. And really the way he moves between high theory and popular culture, or higher education and economics should be a model for others. It will be for me! One of my favorite things about this book is that the author does not just report on other thinkers but actually makes use of them. I don't agree at all with the reviewer who said the book does not practice what it preaches. It does not preach not writing philosophy books. It preaches writing philosophy books differently. I do agree with the earlier reviewer who said the book was life-changing. This book reminded me that this was what I wanted when I first started to study philosophy and politics, but I had kind of given up. Thanks to this book, I have new insights, energy, and determination. A wonderful book. I might even read it yet again!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 7, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is a remarkable book and it is the best book of philosophy that I have read in ages. It features Stuhr's characteristically engaging, passionate, direct writing style--a style that is very learned but manages to be immediate and accessible and even clever and fun. Beginning with Emerson's call that we live prospectively rather than retrospectively, that we live and think for the future rather than the past, that we deveop "an original relation to the universe," Stuhr weaves together pragmatist and postmodernist themes into a philosophy distinctively original and compelling. This vision in its social form is both radically democratic and radically pluralistic and attuned to difference; in its personal form it is honest and this-worldly and oriented to the ordinary losses and loves of our lives. Throughout, Stuhr draws on Dewey and James, and also on Deleuze, Adorno, and Foucault--and the three chapters on these figures develop a fascinating account of a critical philosophy that is not dialectical, transcendental, or unable to resist new forms of social control and containment. The chapter on Deleuze--complete with instructions about its Zappa soundtrack and a vast number of web references-, the one on Adorno--complete with a new logic of difference to replace a logic of contradiction--, and the chapter on Foucault--complete with Talking Heads references and passages in which Stuhr outwrites Hemingway at his own game--are likely to anger the disciples of these three thinkers--but then Deleuze himself declared himself a radical empiricist and discussed the superiority of American literature to European.Read more ›
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Pragmatism, Postmodernism and the Future of Philosophy (Routledge American Philosophy Series)
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