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Pragmatist Interpretations of Obama: On Two Ways of Being a Pragmatist

Pragmatist Interpretations of Obama: On Two Ways of Being a Pragmatist Contemporary Pragmatism Vol. 8, No. 2 (December 2011), 99­112 Editions Rodopi © 2011 This article distinguishes two ways in which a pragmatist might approach the relation between Obama's politics and the resources furnished by pragmatist political philosophy. The first way, conceptual pragmatism, specifies pragmatism in terms of conceptual commitments in order to find out whether or not those commitments can be found in Obama. The second path, methodological pragmatism, works to better understand what Obama stands for in terms of the practical consequences of his actions, speeches, and policies. It is argued that contemporary pragmatists too often neglect the methodological approach. 1. On Pragmatism as Cultural Critical Philosophy An inquiry into the relation between President Barack Obama and philosophical pragmatism suggests at the outset an assumption, or perhaps a hope, that philosophy can and should enable us to reasonably attune ourselves to the pressing cultural, social, and political matters of the day. This hope raises a broader meta-pragmatist question which we pragmatist philosophers might reasonably ask of ourselves: What is it that we take our work to be as pragmatists when we address ourselves to the philosophical critique of crucial cultural matters? Or, to put this meta-pragmatist question http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Contemporary Pragmatism Brill

Pragmatist Interpretations of Obama: On Two Ways of Being a Pragmatist

Contemporary Pragmatism , Volume 8 (2): 99 – Apr 21, 2011

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© Copyright 2011 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1572-3429
eISSN
1875-8185
DOI
10.1163/18758185-90000204
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Contemporary Pragmatism Vol. 8, No. 2 (December 2011), 99­112 Editions Rodopi © 2011 This article distinguishes two ways in which a pragmatist might approach the relation between Obama's politics and the resources furnished by pragmatist political philosophy. The first way, conceptual pragmatism, specifies pragmatism in terms of conceptual commitments in order to find out whether or not those commitments can be found in Obama. The second path, methodological pragmatism, works to better understand what Obama stands for in terms of the practical consequences of his actions, speeches, and policies. It is argued that contemporary pragmatists too often neglect the methodological approach. 1. On Pragmatism as Cultural Critical Philosophy An inquiry into the relation between President Barack Obama and philosophical pragmatism suggests at the outset an assumption, or perhaps a hope, that philosophy can and should enable us to reasonably attune ourselves to the pressing cultural, social, and political matters of the day. This hope raises a broader meta-pragmatist question which we pragmatist philosophers might reasonably ask of ourselves: What is it that we take our work to be as pragmatists when we address ourselves to the philosophical critique of crucial cultural matters? Or, to put this meta-pragmatist question

Journal

Contemporary PragmatismBrill

Published: Apr 21, 2011

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