To anyone who is looking for light it is a pleasure to receive a criticism so acute and on the whole so fair-minded as Professor Montague has given to my little book on Syndicalism and Philosophical Realism in the last number of the Philosophical Review. I am indebted to the editor for permission to publish a few lines of reply,...
The paper is intended to show how little surprising it is that the speculations of M. Bergson and Mr. Russell, in practice, should work out in the same way; that people in the more advanced social movements of the present time should think to draw inspiration from both sources. The thesis is that there is something common to both the ways of thinking, that with this part of themselves they touch social movements, and that the feature in which they at (...) once touch social movements and touch each other is their realism. (shrink)
Discussions on the distinction between philosophy and science are apt to seem rather futile and academic. They would quickly lose that character if they were thought to have any bearing on the question of social survival or decay. That they have such a bearing follows if the following considerations are true, and I think that they are: first, that amongst the conditions of a society’s survival an indispensable one is the prevalence within it of a certain vision of it; secondly, (...) that in its type this vision is akin to philosophy and not to science; and thirdly, that the due cultivation of it necessitates our being careful not to mistake its affiliations. (shrink)
In studying the problems of philosophy, it is commonly considered an advantage to approach them through the history of philosophy, But to be compelled to spread one's sails, and take one's solitary course, “as if no Plato or Kant had ever existed,” has perhaps its advantages too.