By Joan Richardson
Joan Richardson presents a desirable and compelling account of the emergence of the critical American philosophy: pragmatism. She demonstrates pragmatism's engagement with a variety of branches of the ordinary sciences and strains the advance of Jamesian pragmatism from the past due 19th century via modernism, following its pointings into the current. Richardson combines strands from America's non secular event with clinical details to provide interpretations that holiday new floor in literary and cultural heritage. This publication exemplifies the worth of interdisciplinary methods to generating literary feedback. In a sequence of hugely unique readings of Edwards, Emerson, William and Henry James, Stevens, and Stein, A ordinary background of Pragmatism tracks the interaction of spiritual purpose, clinical hypothesis, and literature in shaping an American aesthetic. Wide-ranging and impressive, this groundbreaking e-book can be crucial analyzing for all scholars and students of yankee literature.
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Additional info for A Natural History of Pragmatism
While being able to experience this attitude has value, it is a wholly different value from that derived from rehearsing an attitude learned from reading lines composed by those whose idea of God, if not replaced by Nature, has, continuing the work of the Reformation, replaced the image conceived as icon, static, the “‘idea’ idea,”43 with moving pictures of an ongoing process. I have also not included Whitman because, while he was impassioned with the idea of nature and of the human being and language as fully animal and animate aspects of nature, and shared as well in a secularized ministerial mission, his preparation did not include systematic reading in natural history and science.
64 Stevens’s aphorisms, “Poetry is a health,” Introduction: frontier instances 23 “Poetry is a cure of the mind,”65 were not inscribed as sentimental dicta, but anchored with the full weight of all he had realized from imagining the moving new worlds described by the scientists of his time, as well as what he had internalized from his ministerial forebears. ”66 The discussions of Stevens’s and Stein’s linguistic experiments will redirect attention to the beginnings of America’s philosophical project in Edwards, spinning words into webs where we might catch real fact in the making.
Lambert Strether, the protagonist of The Ambassadors, is a character stretched while tethered by the crossing experiences of Old World and New. Introduction: frontier instances 19 The novel had remained untitled until James sent the finished manuscript to his agent in July 1901. 58 While there are obvious thematic connections between different aspects of the painting and the novel, as noted by Adeline Tintner – the role of Strether as ambassador, the importance of what French culture represents, the significance of the memento mori device – these are surface details, facets of the poetry of James’s subject, the face of the novel viewed head-on, so to speak.