Pragmatism and Moral Objectivity

Hilary Putnam

in Women, Culture, and Development

Published in print November 1995 | ISBN: 9780198289647
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191596698 | DOI:

Series: WIDER Studies in Development Economics

 Pragmatism and Moral Objectivity

Show Summary Details


Putnam engages with moral objectivity and the question of ethical truth in this paper, in which he combats the idea that there is no intellectual structure worth taking seriously to the arguments of American pragmatists such as Charles Peirce, William James, and John Dewey. As a countercurrent to contemporary analytic philosophy, Putnam interprets and builds on the work of Dewey so as to yield the conclusion that there can be a rational basis for adopting ethical positions and that democratic processes are necessary constituents of social rationality.

Keywords: American pragmatism; John Dewey; William James; indispensability arguments; instrumental rationality; objectivity; Charles Peirce; practice; truth

Chapter.  14012 words. 

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.