David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Bruce Wilshire (ed.)
Harper Torchbooks/SUNY Press (1971)
The importance of this collection of writings of William James lies in the fact that it has been arranged to provide a systematic introduction to his major philosophical discoveries, and precisely to those doctrines and theories that are of most burning current interest. William James: The Essential Writings is a series of philosophical arguments on some of the most "obscure and head-cracking problems" in contemporary philosophy; the relation of thought to its object; the interrelationships between meaning and truth; the levels and structures of experience; the degrees of reality; the nature of the embodied self; the relation of ethics, aesthetics, and religious experience to man's strenuously and "heroically" active nature; and, above all, the structurization of the experienced life-world as the validating ground and origin of all theory; Bruce Wilshire has provided an introduction to William James's thought on these and other related points which is at once both substantial and subtle.
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