RECENT AMERICAN PHILOSOPHY by Andrew Reck

RECENT AMERICAN PHILOSOPHY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A young Tulane philosophy professor's vigilant little studies of ten American savants, presented both as an extension of and antidote to the ""classic six"": eirce, James, Royce, Santayana, Dewey and Whitehead, who have for so long hung like the albatross above the academy. The book's scholarship is dense, demanding and a rifle dull. The essays resemble papers given before learned societies. They unwind like inventories: cross-weavings, textual references, catchphrase headings- all very proper, precise and, in a sense, clinical. Since the stance is sympathetic, there's argument, only elucidation. It's a necessary work, if for no other reason than least half the men (Boodin, Urban, Parker, Jordan and Brightman) have to this reviewer's knowledge never been part of any book-length study. The remaining five are ather (or somewhat) well-known: Perry, Hocking, Mead, Sellars and Lovejoy. Reck analyzes his group from what he terms their confluences and collisions in regard to science, religion, esthetics, ethics, economics and the socio-political realities. These are formidable categories in which the ""six"" made grand strides, and in which the ten, whose productivity spans the between the wars era, have been more narrow, particularized or explorative, depending on one's biases. Mead, Boodin and Jordan come off best. Excepting Oxbridge linguistics and existentialism, all the continuing modes are charted.

Publisher: Pantheon