Authors
Jennifer Gaffney
Loyola University, Chicago
Abstract
This paper challenges the assumption that John Dewey’s appeal to the philosophical significance of evolutionary theory serves primarily to legitimize the sciences. By contrast, I argue that a more careful examination of Dewey’s conception of growth reveals that his appropriation of the Darwinian worldview is fundamentally aesthetic. To give contour to the aesthetic Dewey extracts from Darwinism, I consider several aspects of his thought alongside Friedrich Schlegel’s conception of romantic poetry. This, in turn, helps to illustrate that, for Dewey, the dramatic subsistence involved in evolutionary development yields a natural aesthetic that makes possible his notion of meaningful experience.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  History of Philosophy  Philosophy and Religion
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ISBN(s) 1051-3558
DOI acpq201387222
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