An Idealistic Pragmatism: The Development of the Pragmatic by Mary Briody Mahowald (auth.)

By Mary Briody Mahowald (auth.)

When I first grew to become accustomed to the idea of the yankee philoso­ pher Josiah Royce, elements rather intrigued me. the 1st was once Royce's declare that the idea of group was once his major metaphysical guiding principle; the second one used to be his shut organization with the 2 American pragmatists, Charles Sanders Peirce and William James. in regards to the first issue, i used to be struck via the truth that a thinker who died in 1916 should still emphasize a subject matter of such modern value not just in philosophy yet in such a lot of different important fields in addition (sociology, psychology, politics, theology - to call just a few). concerning the moment, i used to be curious as to if the pragmatism of Peirce and James may have motivated Royce throughout the process their specialist and private contacts. equally, I puzzled no matter if the idealism of Royce may have affected the idea of Peirce and James. To have appeased my interest in regard to all 3 thinkers, despite the fact that, might have required (at least) 3 books. As a begin i've got now appeased it in regard to at least one. In gaining knowledge of the writings of Royce i discovered my strategy to the Houghton Library and to the documents of Harvard college at Cambridge, Massa­ chusetts, the place the unpublished manuscripts of Royce are preserved. (No modifying activity has but been performed in this bulk of fabric, although such would definitely be a welcome contribution to American philosophy.

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I]t is a noticeable fact," he observes, that the supernatural may be believed in without the existence of any pious emotion, just as, on the other hand, the deepest piety, in a person of a strong religious temperament, may be found existing almost without any belief in the supernatural. U Rather, belief occurs in the somewhat staid and stolid area where one recognizes that he does not and cannot know absolute answers to fundamental questions. In these darker areas which are much of life, he lives with faith.

So neat a classification is rather unusual in Royce's writings, but the "neatness" does not necessarily facilitate clarity of comprehension. 86 37 HIS THEORY OF KNOWLEDGE 39 some cases be verified by actual experience but need never be. Royce looks elsewhere, then, as we shall subsequently see, to obtain a final determinant of the truth of judgments. In looking elsewhere our idealist hits upon the notion of insight which we have already indicated, though briefly, in Chapter I. To Royce, insight arises out of experience for the sake of experience.

Agreement," says James, thus "turns out to be essentially an affair of 81 82 83 84 36 Prag,42 . Prag,43. Prag, Lectures 3 and 4. Prag, 133. Prag,136-7. 24 INTRODUCTION leading," a leading which provides new truths for future use. 86 The leading process is a never ending one because [t]ruths emerge from facts; but they dip forward into fact again and add to them; which facts again create or reveal new truth and so on indefinitely. 87 The criterion as to whether the wedding between the "new" and the "old" is a true union is its effectiveness.

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