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The Pragmatic Turn in Philosophy Contemporary Engagements Between Analytic and Continental Thought

Co-editor with Mike Sandbothe

The Pragmatic Turn in Philosophy explores how the various discursive strategies of old and new pragmatisms are related, and what their pertinence is to the relationship between pragmatism and philosophy as a whole. The contributors bridge the divide between analytic and continental philosophy through a transcontinental desire to work on common problems in a common philosophical language. Irrespective of which side of the divide one stands on, pragmatic philosophy has gained ascendancy over the traditional concerns of a representationalist epistemology that has determined much of the intellectual and cultural life of modernity. This book details how contemporary philosophy will emerge from this recognition and that, in fact, this emergence is already underway.

Review of

The Pragmatic

Turn in Philosophy


By Stephan Käufer, Franklin & Marshall College

According to the editors' introduction a lot is at stake in a current renewed emphasis on pragmatism. It builds bridges between analytic and continental philosophy, as well as between philosophy and literary theory. It also develops arguments against representationalist epistemology and in doing so searches for a common idiom that can serve an "ecumenical", "transcontinental" and trans-disciplinary "philosophy of the next century". The ecumenical potential of neo-pragmatism is overstated, as this volume itself makes clear. Some basic claims of this new pragmatism may interest university deans and disturb graduate students who, it seems, must make a choice whether they should read Hegel and Heidegger or master symbolic logic. That one might be interested in doing both is unthinkable, even for these new, ecumenical writers. For in the end they admit that, despite all the talk of bridge-building, the split between "Continental" and "analytic" philosophy is unlikely to be healed. What emerges, though, is an interesting and nuanced debate about the internal tensions and future direction of the pragmatist critique of representationalism.

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