Pragmatic Intellectuals

Douglas R. Anderson

in Philosophy Americana

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print May 2006 | ISBN: 9780823225507
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823235506 | DOI:

Series: American Philosophy

Pragmatic Intellectuals

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Pragmatism was granted its own Indian summer at the close of its first century. Despite their emphasis on practice, pragmatists are, for ordinary persons, simply parts of the aggregate of intellectuals and academics. C. Wright Mills observed in 1942 that “Pragmatists have typically been sons of the middle class rising within these strata into rather comfortable academic professions.” The terms of the phrase “pragmatic intellectuals” generate an internal tension as well: they resist yet at the same time demand one another. Pragmatic intellectuals are thinkers whose pragmatism tempers their intellectualism and whose intellectual dimension both underwrites and undermines their pragmatism.

Keywords: pragmatic intellectuals; American philosophy; pragmatists; pragmatism; C. Wright Mills; intellectualism

Chapter.  6858 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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