William James made what are called “contributions” to the fields of psychology, philosophy, and religious studies. But, as editor Robert Richardson explains, just as we do not read Thoreau, Whitman or Emerson for their professional “contributions,” but for their continuing power to motivate and inspire our individual personal lives, so we can read William James to learn how to live a better life. Richardson, author of a recent James Bio (William James: In the Maelstrom of American Modernism), presents a chronological collection of some of James’ most notable writing. Richardson’s introduction to the book covers James’ life and development, preparing the reader to track both through the volume’s essays. The short introductions to each essay provide context for the piece and reflect on its impact and continuing relevance.
William James is known today strictly as a philosopher of pragmatism. Williams James: Politics in the Pluriverse challenges this understanding. Kennan Ferguson argues that James should instead be known as the progenitor of pluralism, one of the most influential and durable American political philosophies of the twentieth century. James contended that engagement with the foreign, the difficult, and the uncomfortable makes us who we are. Rather than mitigating differences or attempting to resolve conflicts, he embraced them, wholeheartedly advocating the opportunity to be transformed. Pluralism, in the mind of the thinker who popularized the term, led to a more complex, more contentious, and f...
Editors Joan Grossman and Ruth Rischin pose to their contributors an intriguing question: What happens when the ideas of a thinker like William James, who—despite his originality—was deeply rooted in American traditions, are refracted through a culture that draws on a heritage profoundly different from his own? Including studies of reception and interpretation of James's major works and analyses of the impact of his own philosophy on certain Russian writers and thinkers, William James in Russian Culture reveals striking parallels among and divergences between the intellectual and the spiritual realms.
This early work is Part I of a fascinating insight into psychological theory of the past that will appeal to psychology enthusiasts and historians alike. Its pages contain a wealth of information and text diagrams. Contents Include: The Scope of Psychology; The Functions of the Brain; On Some General Conditions of Brain-Activity; Habit; The Automaton-Theory; The Mind-stuff Theory; The Methods and Snares of Psychology; The Relations of Minds to Other Things; The Stream of Thought; The Consciousness of Self; Attention; Conception; Discrimination and Comparison; Association; The Perception of Time. Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. We are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.
William James (1842-1910) was one of the most original and influential American thinkers of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. As a professor at Harvard University he published many works that had a wide-ranging impact on both psychology and philosophy. His Principles of Psychology was the most important English-language work on the mind since Locke’s Essay Concerning Human Understanding. His Varieties of Religious Experience practically inaugurated the field of psychology of religion, and it also remains a major inspiration for philosophy of religion. Perhaps most importantly, James publicized the movement of pragmatism and supplied much of its powerful momentum. This book covers the...
Essays in Philosophy brings together twenty-one essays, reviews, and occasional pieces published by James between 1876 and 1910. They range in subject from a concern with the teaching of philosophy and appraisals of philosophers to analyses of important problems. Several of the essays, like "The Sentiment of Rationality" and "The Knowing of Things Together," are of particular significance in the development of the views of James's later works. All of them, as John McDermott says in his Introduction, are in a style that is "engaging and personal...witty, acerbic, compassionate, and polemical." Whether he is writing an article for the Nation of a definition of "Experience" for Baldwin's Dictionary or "The Mad Absolute" for the Journal of Philosophy, James is always unmistakably himself, and always readable.
"It is absolutely the only philosophy with no humbug in it," an exhilarated William James wrote to a friend early in 1907. And later that year, after finishing the proofs of his "little book," he wrote to his brother Henry: "I shouldn't be surprised if ten years hence it should be rated as 'epoch-making, ' for of the definitive triumph of that general way of thinking I can entertain no doubt whatever--I believe it to be something quite like the protestant reformation." Both the acclaim and outcry that greeted Pragmatism: A New Name for Some Old Ways of Thinking helped to affirm James's conviction. For it was in Pragmatism that he confronted older philosophic methods with the "pragmatic" method, demanding that ideas be tested by their relation to life and their effects in experience. James's reasoning and conclusions in Pragmatism have exerted a profound influence on philosophy in this century, and the book remains a landmark.
The Varieties of Religious Experience: A Study in Human Nature is a book by Harvard University psychologist and philosopher William James. It comprises his edited Gifford Lectures on natural theology, which were delivered at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland in 1901 and 1902. The lectures concerned the nature of religion and the neglect of science in the academic study of religion, in James' view. Soon after its publication, the book entered the canon of psychology and philosophy and has remained in print for over a century. Keywords: religion, christianity, christ, church, classic