William James, 'A Certain Blindness' and an Uncertain Pluralism

Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 40:33-45 (1996)
  Copy   BIBTEX


‘Pluralism’ may be an ambiguous term. But it is not the multitude of the word's meanings but the multitude of sorts of thing that ‘pluralists’ might be claiming to be not-single-but-plural that generates unclarity about what any ‘pluralist’ position amounts to. Take ethics: a ‘pluralist’ might be maintaining, as against say an ethical hedonist of a Benthamite sort, that there is more than one sort of thing ‘good in itself. Another ‘pluralist’ might maintain that there is more than one sort of life that counts as a ‘good way of life’. Or that not all moral duties are forms of the duty to be truthful. Or that there is more than one framework in terms of which experiences, actions or lives can properly be assessed. There is a problem in understanding what it is that is supposed to be counted: one-or-many of what? While the value today of William James’s popular essays in what we might now call ‘value pluralism’ far exceeds their role in illustrating this difficulty, they do exemplify it. James of course described himself as a ‘pluralist’; he was on the flagship of that movement. But just to what extent and in what respects remains unclear



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 94,439

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Jamesian Pluralism and Moral Conflict.Henry Jackman - 2005 - Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 41 (1):123 - 128.
Monism and Pluralism about Value.Chris Heathwood - 2015 - In Iwao Hirose & Jonas Olson (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Value Theory. New York NY: Oxford University Press USA. pp. 136-157.
Caring: A Pluralist Account.Joseph P. Walsh - 2017 - Ratio 31 (S1):96-110.
Religious Tolerance, Diversity, and Pluralism.Peter Byrne - 2011 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 68:287-309.
What logical pluralism cannot be.Rosanna Keefe - 2014 - Synthese 191 (7):1375-1390.
Simplifying alethic pluralism.Douglas Edwards - 2011 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 49 (1):28-48.
Pluralism, Kant and Progress.George Crowder - 2018 - Analyse & Kritik 40 (1):191-198.


Added to PP

41 (#384,230)

6 months
10 (#396,519)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references