A penetrating and illuminating exchange of views between Richard Rorty, a highly influential and sometimes controversial philosopher, and seven of his most thoughtful critics, providing new insights into the impact of his work on contemporary American philosophy.
Herman J. Saatkamp’s _A Life of Scholarship with Santayana: Essays and Reflections_ gathers together his work of a lifetime. There are twenty-three pieces, in three sections: “Santayana and Philosophy,” “Editorship,” and “Genetic Concerns and the Future of Philosophy.”.
This bibliographical checklist has its origins in a conflation of two previous bibliographies, those of Shohig Terzian and Ceferino Santos Escudero, S.J. These basic listings were considerably amplified by materials discovered during research for the complete critical edition of Santayana's work, and this bibliography remains an essential resource for Santayana scholars.
Life as a complicated process is composed of causal phenomena. But even if we know the reasons of all that happens in a living organism, we do not know what life really is. The problem of intercausal relation, of “causal structure” remains. The reason why a process takes place, must be found by analysis, causal structures are found by synthesis of the results of this analysis. Causal structures are characterized by two kinds of equilibrium: energetic and specific equilibrium. A state (...) of physical equilibrium is characterized by a minimum of free energy; a biological energetic equilibrium is an organized one, where the vital factors activate the production of energy by each other and force each other to limit that production to the necessary measure. A specific equilibrium is characterized by the properties of its factors, properties by which those factors act as a cause after having received a specific stimulation. Every factor possesses two specific properties, in accordance with the properties of two neighbouring factors, as a link between two other links in a chain . Both forms of equilibrium authorise us to speak of living systems as a “whole”. In the second part of this paper we treat the dynamic aspect of the functions of living systems as a “whole”. This dynamic aspect manifests itself in growth and probably in cortical functions. Blastomeres represent, when isolated, the “whole” of growing potentialities of a germe. In normal contact with each other they restrict themselves to produce a part of that “whole”, in harmony with that which other blastomeres produce. This harmonious restriction can be explained by interaction between all the blastomeres by which every blastomere suppresses in other blastomeres all that it will produce itself. Blastomeres must therefore act on other blastomees not according to their isolate “being”, but according to the influences which they undergo by all other blastomeres, that means according to their “rôle”. There must be a causal net of interaction between all the blastomeres and that net “as a whole” determines every step of growth. Such a net of relation determines also human history and sociology. Materialism only took account of isolated causes, vitalism only of the effect of the net of causal relations without understanding that such a net might be analysed. In reality there is neither materialism nor vitalism.La vie est un phénomène complexe, se composant de différents phénomènes causals, qui un jour peut-être seront réduits à la causalité physique et chimique. Cependant connaitre toutes les causes des phénomènes vitaux ne signifie pas connaître la vie. Le problème de la vie ne se borne pas aux rapports causals, mais implique surtout les rapports intercausals, c'est à dire l'harmonie ou l'équilibre de ses parties constituantes. La vie comme phénomène est provoquée par une „structure causale”. Tandis que les causes sont trouvées par l'analyse, les rapports intercausals doivent être recherchés par la synthèse, c'est-à-dire par la réconstruction de la réalité de l'organisme vivant en se servant des données analytiques. Le système vivant est en équilibre énergétique et spécifique. Les facteurs énergétiques sont interlacés de telle façon, qu'ils s'activent entre eux et qu'ils se forcent entre eux à se resteindre au développement de l'énergie nécessaire. Un équilibre physique c'est l'état d'énergie libre minimum, tandis que l'équilibre biologique c'est un état d'énergie organisée. Dans un équilibre spécifique on ne peut se borner aux effects causals se manifestant par un phénomène. Il faut décrire les rapports des propriétés spécifiques de tous les facteurs; ce sont ces propriétés qui leur permettent d'agir comme cause, lorsqu'-ils sont atteint d'une excitation spécifique. Les facteurs possèdent au moins deux propriétés spécifiques, adaptées à deux facteurs voisins, comme chaque anneau d'une chaine s'adaptant à deux anneaux voisins . Le fait que l'on trouve dans chaque individu ces deux formes d'équilibre nous donne le droit de créer le concept du „tout” par rapport auquel on peut constater l'harmonie de tous les tacteurs.C'est là le „tout statique”, reste encore le „tout dynamique” qui se manifeste par la croissance et probablement par les phénomènes se produisant dans l'écorce cérébrale, base des actes psychiques. Les parties représentent beaucoup de possibilités qui ne se réalisent pas; p.e. les blastomères peuvent représenter le „tout” de l'organisme, tandis qu'ils se borneront dans la croissance normale à la production d'une part de l'individu. Il y a une interaction entre tous les blastomères, de façon que, par la suppression ou par l'activation mutuelle, chaque partie réalise ce que lui laissent les autres et ce qui est en harmonie avec ce que produiront les autres. De cette façon il y aura de l'harmonie dans tout ce qui sera produit. Les parties agissent par cette interaction, non selon leur „être”, en tant que cellule isolée, mais selon leur „rôle” dans le „tout” du germe, rôle qui est déterminé par cette interaction mutuelle universelle. C'est cette interaction qui détermine le „patron causal”, responsable de chaque étappe de la coissance. Ainsi ce ne sont pas les facteus isolés, mais le réseau des rapports établis entre tous les facteurs, qui gouvernent les phénomènes de la croissance. Ce réseau, par activation ou par suppression, détermine à chaque instant les propriétés causales des parties, d'entre toutes les multiples possibilités. Les possibilités étant données dans les cellules, c'est le „tout” du réseau des rapports qui détermine la croissance. Le matérialisme n'a vu que les causes isolées, telles qu'ellés se manifestent dans les expériences des physiciens, grâce à la technique; le vitalisme n'a vu que le „tout”, sans tâcher de l'analyser afin de trouver à sa base le système causal compliqué, que nous avons tâché de décrire. Dans la réalité la théorie du causalisme ni celle du vitalisme le tiennent plus de bout. (shrink)
Interpretations of Poetry and Religion is the third volume in a new critical edition of the complete works of George Santayana that restores Santayana's original text and provides important new scholarly information.Published in the spring of 1900, Interpretations of Poetry and Religion was George Santayana's first book of critical prose. It developed his view that "poetry is called religion when it intervenes in life, and religion, when it merely supervenes upon life, is seen to be nothing but poetry." This statement (...) and the point of view it espoused contributed significantly to the debate between science and religion at the turn of the century, and its eloquence and clearsightedness continue to have an impact on current discussions about the nature of religion.Interpretations of Poetry and Religion affronted Santayana's peers with its assault on literary and religious pieties of the cultivated classes. William James called its philosophy of harmonious and integral ideal systems nothing less than "a perfection of rottenness."In his insightful introductory essay, Joel Porte observes that while Santayana's theory of correlative objects, his espousal of the "ideal" - the normal human affinity for abstraction - and exaltation of the imagination may have offended some at Harvard, these ideas had a significant influence on other Harvard scholars T.S. Eliot and Santayana's "truest disciple," Wallace Stevens.Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr., heads the Department of Philosophy and Humanities at Texas A & M University. William G. Holzberger is a Professor of English at Bucknell University. Joel Porte is Whiton Professor of American Literature at Cornell University. (shrink)
Fuijita claims that in spite of the growing interest in the last decades in the early writings of Hegel, not enough attention has been focused on their connection. He presents the phases in Hegel’s thought from his days at Tübingen, Bern, and Frankfurt to his new beginnings at Jena not as being in each case completely new, but rather as developments made possible on the basis of earlier positions prompted by the impulses received from friends and critics. Not only is (...) Schelling’s major role for Hegel’s development carefully outlined, but also the impact that Fichte, Herder, Hölderlin, Jacobi, Reinhold, and Spinoza had on Hegel. The way in which the book probes these different influences on Hegel and his critical reaction to them places it in the tradition of solid German Ph.D. theses with their penchant for close textual references and copious footnotes to provide evidence for the interpretive claims and to allow for critical comments on the secondary literature, chiefly works in German. Worth mentioning is the clarity of Fujita’s diction in presenting the complex issues of German idealist philosophy, which alone is no mean achievement for somebody whose mother tongue is not German. (shrink)
The press environment created by abrupt transitions from government dominance to independence has created difficult ethical dilemmas for editors and publishers. Pursuit of earnings - without which a free marketplace of ideas is impossible - has forced leaders of media enterprises to make painful choices about employment, privacy, career training, distribution, pornography, and subsidy. Winnowing out the weak and inefficient is seen as both healthy and creative. Consensus on ethical guidelines will not come quickly. Political and economic changes occur more (...) rapidly than cultural ones. In all free countries, press management involves a delicate balancing of cultural and economic imperatives. In newly free countries achieving that balance is particularly difficult. (shrink)
Book Three of George Santayana's letters covers a period of intense intellectual activity in Santayana's life, and the correspondence reflects the establishment of his mature philosophy. Santayana becomes more permanently established in Italy, but continues to travel in France, Spain, and England. The year 1927 marks the beginning of his long friendship with Daniel Cory, who became his literary secretary and eventually his literary executor. Also, with the death of Santayana's half-brother Robert, George Sturgis, Robert's son, becomes an important part (...) of Santayana's life and letters as his financial manager. Santayana continues to write to his sister Susana, as well as to numerous friends and fellow philosophers, including Bernard Berenson, Robert Seymour Bridges, Curt John Ducasse, John Erskine, Horace Meyer Kaller, Lewis Mumford, George Herbert Palmer, John Francis Stanley Russell, Herbert Wallace Schneider, Charles Augustus Strong, Paul Weiss, and Harry Austryn Wolfson. Other correspondents include Wendell T. Bush, Alys Gregory, Marianne Moore, John Middleton Murray, and Frederick J. E. Woodbridge. (shrink)
To push the edges of the known, to look at the accepted in novel ways, is indeed to stand at the frontiers of a field. In Frontiers in American Philosophy thirty-five contemporary scholars explore classical American thought in bold new ways. An extraordinary range of issues and thinkers is represented in these pages--from such core themes as metaphysics and social philosophy, which receive primary attention, to some consideration of American philosophers' technical accomplishments in mathematical logic and philosophical analysis. The authors (...) also offer new perspectives on the work of the leading American philosophers, including George Herbert Mead, William James, John Dewey, Charles Sanders Peirce, and Emma Goldman. Not surprisingly perhaps, a great deal of the discussion revolves, either directly or indirectly, around that great axis of intellectual issues commonly known as the "realism/idealism" controversy. It seems fitting that so much attention is devoted to the possibility of some sort of middle position between "external realism" and its antipode in some form of relativistic subjectivism. For, in the last analysis, such a middle position is for the American philosophers the core meaning of "pragmatism.”. (shrink)
Since the first selection of George Santayana's letters was published in 1955, shortly after his death, many more letters have been located. The Works of George Santayana, Volume V, brings together a total of more than 3,000 letters. The volume is divided chronologically into eight books of roughly comparable length. Book Two covers Santayana's first decade as a "freelance philosopher," following his resignation from Harvard University and move to Europe. Of particular interest is Santayana's continuing correspondence with the American philosopher (...) Charles Augustus Strong and with his sister Susana Sturgis de Sastre. Also included is correspondence with such notable figures as Bertrand Russell, Robert Seymour Bridges, Horace Kallen, and Logan Pearsall Smith. The correspondence covers Santayana's resignation from Harvard, his time in England during World War I, and comments on his philosophical work during this period. (shrink)
George Santayana published The Realm of Matter and The Genteel Tradition at Bay. He continued work on Book Three of Realms of Being, The Realm of Truth, and on his novel, The Last Puritan. Citing his commitment to his writing and his intention to retire from academia, he declined offers from Harvard University for the Norton Chair of Poetry and for a position as William James Professor of Philosophy, as well as offers for positions at the New School for Social (...) Research and Brown University. The deaths of his half sisters, Susan Sturgis de Sastre and Josephine Sturgis, in 1928 and 1930, respectively, were extremely distressing to him. Santayana and Charles Strong continued their epistolary debate over the nature and perception of reality and the problem of knowledge. The book also includes letters to Robert Bridges, Cyril Clemens, Morris R. Cohen, Curt John Ducasse, Sydney Hook, Horace Meyer Kallen, Walter Lippmann, Ralph Barton Perry, William Lyon Phelps, and Herbert W. Schneider. Santayana sent many letters with articles and reviews to journalists Wendell T. Bush, Henry Seidel Canby, Wilbur Cross, and John Middleton Murry. Discussion of his novel and continuing work on Realms of Being took place with Otto Kyllmann and John Hall Wheelock, his editors at Constable and Scribner's. Although Santayana now made the Hotel Bristol in Rome his permanent residence, he continued to travel in England, France, and Italy. (shrink)
During the period covered by this book, George Santayana had settled permanently in Rome. His best-selling novel, The Last Puritan, was published in London in 1935 and in the United States in 1936, where it was chosen as a Book-of-the-Month Club selection. In 1936 Santayana became one of the few philosophers ever to appear on the front cover of Time magazine. His growing influence was evidenced further by two other 1936 publications, Obiter Scripta: Lectures, Essays and Reviews and Philosophy of (...) Santayana: Selections From the Works of George Santayana. Also during this year the first six volumes of the Triton Edition, a limited signed edition with significant new prefaces, was published by Scribner's. Santayana continued work on The Realm of Truth and The Realm of Spirit, as well as his autobiography, Persons and Places. (shrink)
The eight books of The Letters of George Santayana bring together over 3,000 letters, many of which have been discovered in the fifty years since Santayana's death. This sixth book covers four years of Santayana's life in Rome, his permanent residence since the late 1920s. During these years, Santayana, in his seventies, saw the publication of the remaining nine volumes of the Triton Edition of his work as well as the last two books of his Realms of Being: The Realm (...) of Truth and The Realm of Spirit. In 1938 the first book-length biography of Santayana was published, and in 1940 The Philosophy of George Santayana--a collection of critical essays that included Santayana's rejoinder, "Apologia pro Mente Sua"--was published as volume two of Northwestern University Press?s Library of Living Philosophers. In 1939, when war broke out in Europe and Swiss authorities denied him a long-term visa, Santayana decided to stay in Italy, where he was to remain for the rest of his life.The letters in this book are written to such correspondents as Van Meter Ames, Curt John Ducasse, Max Forrester Eastman, Max Fisch, Sidney Hook, Horace Meyer Kallen, Christopher Janus, Milton Munitz, William Lyon Phelps, and Ezra Pound, and include discussions of the work of Henri Bergson, T. S. Eliot, William Faulkner, and Ezra Pound, among others. (shrink)
This penultimate volume of Santayana's letters chronicles Santayana's life during a difficult time--the war years and the immediate postwar period. The advent of World War II left Santayana isolated in Rome, and the difficulties of wartime travel across borders forced him to abandon plans to move to more agreeable locations in Switzerland or Spain. During these years, Santayana lived in a single room in a nursing home run by the "Blue Sisters" of the Little Company of Mary in Rome, where, (...) during the winter months, he did much of his writing in bed in order to stay warm. And yet, despite wartime deprivations, illness, and old age, Santayana was remarkably productive, completing both his autobiography Persons and Places and The Idea of Christ in the Gospels: or God in Man, and all but completing Dominations and Powers. He confided to one correspondent that he had "never been more at peace or more happy."The eight books of The Letters of George Santayana bring together over 3,000 letters, many of which have been discovered in the fifty years since Santayana's death. Letters in Book Seven are written to such correspondents as his friend and protégée Daniel Cory, his financial manager and heir George Sturgis, and the American poet Robert Lowell. The correspondence with Lowell--which began when the younger writer sent Santayana a copy of his Pulitzer Prize-winning Lord Weary's Castle--signals an important new friendship, which became a source of affection and intellectual engagement in Santayana's final years. (shrink)
This final volume of Santayana's letters spans the last five years of the philosopher's life. Despite the increasing infirmities of age and illness, Santayana continued to be remarkably productive during these years, working steadily until September 1952, when he died of stomach cancer, just three months short of his eighty-ninth birthday. Still living in the nursing home run by the "Blue Sisters" of the Little Company of Mary in Rome, Santayana completed his book Dominations and Powers, which had been more (...) than fifty years in the making, the final part of his autobiography Persons and Places, published posthumously in 1953 as My Host the World, and the abridgement of his early five-part masterwork, The Life of Reason, into a single volume--all while continuing to maintain a voluminous correspondence with friends and admirers. The eight books of The Letters of George Santayana bring together over 3,000 letters, many of which have been discovered in the fifty years since Santayana's death. Letters in Book Eight are written to such correspondents as the young American poet Robert Lowell ; Ira D. Cardiff, the editor of Atoms of Thought, a collection of excerpts from Santayana's writings ; Richard Colton Lyon, a young Texan who would later collect Santayana's writings about America in Santayana on America: Essays, Notes, and Letters on American Life, Literature, and Philosophy ; and the humanist philosopher Corliss Lamont.William G. Holzberger is Professor of English Emeritus at Bucknell University. (shrink)
Published in 1935, George Santayana's The Last Puritan was the American philosopher's only novel. It became an instant best-seller, immediately linked in its painful voyage of self discovery to The Education of Henry Adams. It is essentially a novel of ideas, expressed in the birth, life, and early death of Oliver Alden.The Last Puritan is volume four in a new critical edition of The Works of George Santayana that restores Santayana's original text and provides important new scholarly information. Books in (...) this series - the first complete publication of Santayana's works - include an editorial apparatus with notes to the text, textual commentary, discussions of adopted readings, lists of variants and emendations, and line-end hyphenations. Irving Singer's new introduction to this edition takes up Santayana's philosophical and artistic concerns, including issues of homosexuality raised by the depiction of the novel's two protagonists, Oliver and Mario, and of the relationship between Oliver and the rogue character Jim Darnley. In his thoughtful analysis Singer finds the term "homosexual novel" too reductionist and imprecise for what Santayana is trying to achieve. Singer brings to light the author's skillful and inventive methods for perceiving and interpreting reality, including ideal forms of friendship, and his success in exploring the pervasive moral problems that people face throughout their existence. (shrink)