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Profile: Alexander Klein (California State University, Long Beach)
  1. Alexander Klein (2008). Divide Et Impera! William James's Pragmatist Tradition in the Philosophy of Science. Philosophical Topics 36 (1):129-166.
    ABSTRACT. May scientists rely on substantive, a priori presuppositions? Quinean naturalists say "no," but Michael Friedman and others claim that such a view cannot be squared with the actual history of science. To make his case, Friedman offers Newton's universal law of gravitation and Einstein's theory of relativity as examples of admired theories that both employ presuppositions (usually of a mathematical nature), presuppositions that do not face empirical evidence directly. In fact, Friedman claims that the use of such presuppositions is (...)
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  2. Alexander Klein (2009). On Hume on Space: Green's Attack, James' Empirical Response. Journal of the History of Philosophy 47 (3):pp. 415-449.
    ABSTRACT. Associationist psychologists of the late 19th-century premised their research on a fundamentally Humean picture of the mind. So the very idea of mental science was called into question when T. H. Green, a founder of British idealism, wrote an influential attack on Hume’s Treatise. I first analyze Green’s interpretation and criticism of Hume, situating his reading with respect to more recent Hume scholarship. I focus on Green’s argument that Hume cannot consistently admit real ideas of spatial relations. I then (...)
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  3.  71
    Alexander Klein (2015). Science, Religion, and “The Will to Believe". Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 5 (1):72-117.
    Do the same epistemic standards govern scientific and religious belief? Or should science and religion operate in completely independent epistemic spheres? Commentators have recently been divided on William James’s answer to this question. One side depicts “The Will to Believe” as offering a separate-spheres defense of religious belief in the manner of Galileo. The other contends that “The Will to Believe” seeks to loosen the usual epistemic standards so that religious and scientific beliefs can both be justified by a unitary (...)
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  4.  46
    Alexander Klein (2013). Who is in the Community of Inquiry? Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 49 (3):413-423.
    A central theme of Cheryl Misak’s important new history is that there are two markedly different strands of the pragmatist tradition. One pragmatism traces back to Peirce, she thinks, and it takes seriously the ideals of logical precision, truth, and objectivity. This tradition had its insights carried through later analytic philosophy by figures like C. I. Lewis, Quine, and Davidson, among others. The second pragmatism has its roots in James’s (allegedly) more subjectivistic outlook and after Dewey’s death was revived by (...)
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  5.  5
    Alexander Klein (2016). Was James Psychologistic? Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 4 (5).
    As Thomas Uebel has recently argued, some early logical positivists saw American pragmatism as a kindred form of scientific philosophy. They associated pragmatism with William James, whom they rightly saw as allied with Ernst Mach. But what apparently blocked sympathetic positivists from pursuing commonalities with American pragmatism was the concern that James advocated some form of psychologism, a view they thought could not do justice to the a priori. This paper argues that positivists were wrong to read James as offering (...)
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  6.  23
    Alexander Klein (2005). The Philosophy of William James. Newsletter of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy 33 (101):35-37.
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    Alexander Klein (2015). Hatfield on American Critical Realism. Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 5 (1):154-166.
    The turn of the last century saw an explosion of philosophical realisms, both in the United States and in the United Kingdom. Gary Hatfield helpfully asks whether we can impose order on this chaotic scene by portraying these diverse actors as responding to a common philosophical problem—the so-called problem of the external world, as articulated by William Hamilton. I argue that we should not place the American realism that grows out of James’s neutral monism in this problem space. James first (...)
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  8.  5
    Alexander Klein (2002). Review of “Labyrinth: A Search for the Hidden Meaning of Science”. [REVIEW] Essays in Philosophy 3 (1):11.
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  9.  10
    Alexander Klein (2007). Review of Elizabeth F. Cooke, Peirce's Pragmatic Theory of Inquiry: Fallibilism and Indeterminacy. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2007 (10).
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  10.  1
    Alexander Klein (2012). Francesca Bordogna.William James at the Boundaries: Philosophy, Science, and the Geography of Knowledge. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008. Pp. X+382, Index. $39.00. [REVIEW] Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 2 (1):161-166.
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  11. Alexander Klein (2009). On Hume on Space: Green's Attack, James' Empirical Response: HumeDavid,.1711-1776. Journal of the History of Philosophy 47 (3):415-449.
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  12. Alexander Klein (2007). The Rise of Empiricism: William James, Thomas Hill Green, and the Struggle Over Psychology. Dissertation, Indiana University, Bloomington
    The concept of empiricism evokes both a historical tradition and a set of philosophical theses. The theses are usually understood to have been developed by Locke, Berkeley, and Hume. But these figures did not use the term “empiricism,” and they did not see themselves as united by a shared epistemology into one school of thought. My dissertation analyzes the debate that elevated the concept of empiricism (and of an empiricist tradition) to prominence in English-language philosophy. -/- In the 1870s and (...)
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