"A halting-stage in the evolution of logical theory": John Dewey’s critical engagement with Lotze’s logic

Martin Ejsing Christensen

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Abstrakt

This paper analyzes the way in which the American pragmatist John Dewey’s engaged critically with Hermann Lotze’s logic in a series of papers in the 1903 anthology Studies in Logical Theory. The first part of the paper describes the backdrop for Dewey’s critical engagement with Lotze, namely, his attempt to distinguish his newly developed instrumentalist understanding of logic from the absolute idealism that had played an important role in his earlier thinking. The next part of the paper then describes the instrumental position from which Dewey approached Lotze’s thinking, while the final part of the paper examines Dewey’s critical analysis of Lotze’s thinking about logic. Here the conclusion will be that even though Dewey saw Lotze as “one of the most vigorous and acute of modern logicians”, he also thought that Lotze represented “a halting-stage in the evolution of logical theory” in so far as his thinking never managed to get beyond the classical “empiristic and transcendental logics” in the way that Dewey thought his own instrumental logic managed to do.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftPhilosophical Readings: Online Journal of Philosophy
Vol/bind10
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)123-128
Antal sider6
ISSN2036-4989
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 1 apr. 2018

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