Contents: FOREWORD Aronson, Moses J.; THE HUMANIZATION OF PHILOSOPHY Ayres, Clarence Edwin, THE GOSPEL OF TECHNOLOGY Bates, Ernest Sutherland; TOWARD A SOCIAL PHILOSOPHY Bode, Boyd H.; "THE GREAT AMERICAN DREAM" Cohen Felix S.; THE SOCIALIZATION OF MORALITY Costello, Harry Todd, A PHILOSOPHER AMONG THE METAPHYSICIANS Durant, Will; AN AMATEUR'S PHILOSOPHY Edman, Irwin; THE NATURALISTIC TEMPER Flewelling, Ralph Tyler; THE NEW TASK OF PHILOSOPHY Holt, Edwin Bissell; THE WHIMSICAL CONDITION OF SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY, AND OF MANKIND Hook, Sidney; EXPERIMENTAL NATURALISM (...) Irving, John Allan; TOWARD RADICAL EMPIRICISM IN ETHICS Kallen, Horace Meyer . (shrink)
One of America's best known social and political philosophers, SidneyHook, compiled this fascinating combination of essays popular and technical addressing questions by professionals and lay readers alike. -/- Written between 1934 and 1960, these controversial essays generated heated discussion and polemic, the echoes of which are still being heard. Championing secularism, humanism, and naturalism, Hook eloquently argues against the claim that religious experience and metaphysical insight alone can discover truths about existence and reality that rest outside (...) the domain of scientific method or inquiry. -/- Crucial philosophical questions are discussed: What is the role of philosophy in life? Is "philosophical knowledge" possible, as distinct from scientific and commonsense knowledge? Does determinism vacate moral responsibility? Do religious and metaphysical beliefs possess cognitive meaning? What is the core dispute between materialism and idealism? -/- Hook's provocative analyses will not only clarify these questions but stimulate readers to reassess their own views. (shrink)
This book is the published version of SidneyHook's dissertation, written under John Dewey at Columbia University. It helped move American pragmatism in the direction of pragmatic realism. The book appears with an Introduction by Dewey.
Philosophy and human conduct.--Moral freedom in a determined world.--The ethical theory of John Dewey.--The new failure of nerve.--Religion and the intellectuals.--An open letter to SidneyHook: a defense of religious faith, by E. van den Haag.--Modern knowledge and the concept of God.--Two types of existentialist religion and ethics.--The quest for "being."--Naturalism and first principles.--Nature and the human spirit.--Scientific knowledge and philosophical "knowledge."--Materialism and idealism.--Are religious dogmas cognitive?
Challenges liberals and conservatives alike, as Hook pierces to the heart of momentous issues: human rights, racial equality, cultural freedom, and the separation of ethical behavior from religious belief.
John Dewey and the spirit of pragmatism, by H. M. Kallen.--Dewey and art, by I. Edman.--Instrumantalism and the history of philosophy, by G. Boas.--Culture and personality, by L. K. Frank.--Social inquiry and social doctrine, by H. L. Friess.--Dewey's theories of legal reasoning and valuation, by S. Ratner.--John Dewey and education, by J. L. Childs.--Dewey's revision of Jefferson, by M. R. Konvitz.--Laity and prelacy in American democracy, by H. W. Schneider.--Organized labor and the Dewey philosophy, by M. Starr.--The desirable and emotive (...) in Dewey's ethics, by S. Hook.--John Dewey's theory of inquiry, by F. Kaufman.--Dewey's theory of natural science, by E. Nagel.--Concerning a certain Deweyan conception of metaphysics, by A. Hofstadter.--Dewey's theory of language and meaning, by P. D. Wienpahl.--Language, rules, and behavior, by W. Sellars.--The analytic and the synthetic: an untenable dualism, by M. G. White.--John Dewey and Karl Marx, by J. Cork.--Dewey in Mexico, by J. T. Farrell. (shrink)
Professor [H.W.] Sheldon's critique of contemporary naturalism as professed in the volume Naturalism and the Human Spirit consists of one central "accusation": naturalism is materialism pure and simple. This charge is supported by his further claim that since the scientific method naturalists espouse for acquiring reliable knowledge of nature is incapable of yielding knowledge of the mental or spiritual "nature" for the naturalist is definitionally limited to "physical nature." He therefore concludes that instead of being a philosophy which can settle (...) age-old conflicts between materialism and idealism, naturalism is no more than a partisan standpoint, and contributes no new philosophical synthesis. ... (shrink)
Newly re-printed, Sydney Hook’s classic (1939) work on Dewey appears with an Introduction by Richard Rorty. Hook may help us see how Dewey fit into his own time. That story is important. The new printing may also help us see how Dewey fits into our time. Rorty lauds more recent treatments of Dewey’s work, especially Robert Westbrook’s intellectual biography John Dewey and American Democracy (1991), and Steven Rockefeller’s John Dewey: Religious Faith and Democratic Humanism (1991) gets honorable mention. (...) Specific comments focus on Alan Ryan’s John Dewey and the High Tide of American Liberalism (1995). “It may be that Dewey and Hook witnessed, as Alan Ryan suggests, ... ‘the high tide of American liberalism,’ but if this is so, then America has lost its soul.”1 Even future-focused pragmatists need to look back to Dewey and Hook. They were “Americans” who, in the final words of the Hook volume, “still had hope for what America may yet be.”. (shrink)
This remarkable expression of radical republican thought has never before been published. Algernon Sidney was among the most unrelenting partisans of the parliamentary party during the Commonwealth, and died on the scaffold in 1683 for his opposition to Charles II. Sidney's voluminous Discourses Concerning Government was published after his death, but the earlier and more vivid Court Maxims was only recently rediscovered in a manuscript in Warwick Castle. Written during Sidney's continental exile, Court Maxims reveals the international (...) character of republican thought. Its dialogue structure presents a lively discussion about the principles of government and the practice of politics, articulating a vital tradition of republicanism in an age of absolutism. These characteristics make Court Maxims a unique text, essential reading for anyone interested in republicanism or Early Modern political thought. (shrink)
This work first appeared as SidneyHook's dissertation, afterward quickly published by Open Court in 1927, the same year Hook began his long career at New York University. Heretofore difficult to find, it now appears as a handsome and timely reprint, carrying John Dewey's original "Introductory Word," and providing opportunity to look back at the pragmatist tradition and the controversial role of metaphysics in it.
Diggins observes in this essay that, while Nozick and Hook shared a passion for freedom and for understanding liberty in all its complexities, the two philosophers, one a libertarian and the other a democratic socialist, occupied different worlds when it came to how they viewed property and power. Nozick believed that freedom and justice depended upon a minimal state that would be severely restricted in its exercise of power. SidneyHook never renounced his conviction, born of his (...) early attraction to Marxism, that truly dangerous power is wielded not principally by government but by private individuals of great material wealth: by industrialists. Diggins examines the divergent views of these two seminal thinkers on such issues as human rights, private property, democracy, and judicial review. The differences are profound, yet they shared a common interest in the life of the mind and in exploring such hoary philosophical topics as free will versus determinism and the grounding of moral values. (shrink)