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James S. Pearson
University of Lisbon
James Pearson
Bridgewater State University
James Pearson
Kutztown University of Pennsylvania
  1. Carnap, Explication, and Social History.James Pearson - 2017 - Social Theory and Practice 43 (4):741-774.
  2.  40
    Nietzsche on the necessity of repression.James S. Pearson - 2023 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 66 (1):1-30.
    It has become orthodox to read Nietzsche as proposing the ‘sublimation’ of troublesome behavioural impulses. On this interpretation, he is said to denigrate the elimination of our impulses, preferring that we master them by pressing them into the service of our higher goals. My thesis is that this reading of Nietzsche’s conception of self-cultivation does not bear scrutiny. Closer examination of his later thought reveals numerous texts that show him explicitly recommending an eliminatory approach to self-cultivation. I invoke his theory (...)
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  3. Could a Heptapod Act? Language and Agency in Arrival.James Pearson - 2019 - Film and Philosophy 23:48-68.
    Arrival offers a useful thought experiment in the philosophy of mind and language. Assessing human linguists' interpretive efforts to understand the alien heptapod form of life in both the movie and the novella from which it was adapted (Ted Chiang’s “Story of Your Life”) teach us how our understanding of selfhood shapes our conception of agency. Arrival’s reflexive commentary on the cinematic experience is also an argument for the value of learning to communicate in cinematic language.
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  4.  16
    Warding off the Evil Eye: Peer Envy in Rawls's Just Society.James S. Pearson - forthcoming - Archiv für Geschichte der Philosophie.
    This article critically analyzes Rawls’s attitude towards envy. In A Theory of Justice, Rawls is predominantly concerned with the threat that class envy – or what he calls general envy – poses to political stability. By contrast, he does not think that particular envy – the type of envy that arises between peers competing for the same objects – would be in any way problematic for his ideal political society. I contest this claim by pointing to the politically deleterious effects (...)
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  5.  23
    Nietzsche on the Sources of Agonal Moderation.James Pearson - 2018 - Journal of Nietzsche Studies 49 (1):102-129.
    I do not recommend peace to you, but victory instead. Your work shall be a struggle, your peace shall be a victory!As can be seen from the epigraph, Nietzsche famously entreats his readers to pursue a life of struggle and victory as opposed to one of peace. This is not a singular occurrence. For instance, in a notebook entry of the same period, he calls for an "unleashing of struggle [Kampf]" with the objective of instigating sociocultural rejuvenation, thereby echoing many (...)
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  6.  59
    Writing Conversationalists into History.James Pearson - 2022 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 10 (6).
    Burton Dreben taught a generation of scholars the value of closely attending to the recent philosophical past. But the few papers he authored do little to capture his philosophical voice. In this article, I turn instead to an unpublished transcript of Dreben in conversation with his contemporaries. In addition to yielding insights into a transitional period in W.V. Quine’s and Donald Davidson’s thought, I argue that this document showcases Dreben in his element, revealing the way that he shaped the views (...)
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  7. Realism in the Ethics of Immigration.James S. Pearson - forthcoming - Philosophy and Social Criticism:019145372210796.
    The ethics of immigration is currently marked by a division between realists and idealists. The idealists generally focus on formulating morally ideal immigration policies. The realists, however, tend to dismiss these ideals as far-fetched and infeasible. In contrast to the idealists, the realists seek to resolve pressing practical issues relating to immigration, principally by advancing what they consider to be actionable policy recommendations. In this article, I take issue with this conception of realism. I begin by surveying the way in (...)
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  8.  17
    United we stand, divided we fall: the early Nietzsche on the struggle for organisation.James S. Pearson - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (4):508-533.
    ABSTRACTAccording to Nietzsche, both modern individuals and societies are pathologically fragmented. In this paper, I examine how he proposes we combat this affliction in his Untimely Meditations. I argue that he advocates a dual struggle involving both instrumental domination and eradication. On these grounds, I claim the following: 1. pace a growing number of commentators, we cannot categorise the species of conflict he endorses in the Untimely Meditations as agonistic; and 2. this conflict is better understood as analogous to the (...)
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  9.  11
    Review of Matt LaVine, Race, Gender, and the History of Early Analytic Philosophy. [REVIEW]James Pearson - 2022 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 10 (2).
  10.  94
    Language, Subjectivity and the Agon: A Comparative Study of Nietzsche and Lyotard.James S. Pearson - 2015 - Logoi 1 (3):76-101.
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  11. Distinguishing WV Quine and Donald Davidson.James Pearson - 2011 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 1 (1):1-22.
    Given W.V. Quine’s and Donald Davidson’s extensive agreement about much of the philosophy of language and mind, and the obvious methodological parallels between Quine’s radical translation and Davidson’s radical interpretation, many—including Quine and Davidson—are puzzled by their occasional disagreements. I argue for the importance of attending to these disagreements, not just because doing so deepens our understanding of these influential thinkers, but because they are in fact the shadows thrown from two distinct conceptions of philosophical inquiry: Quine’s “naturalism” and what (...)
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  12.  18
    The Value of Malevolent Creativity.James S. Pearson - 2020 - Journal of Value Inquiry 55 (1):127-144.
    Until recently, theorists of creativity have consistently maintained that two necessary conditions must be satisfied in order for us to legitimately ascribe creativity to a given phenomenon: a) that it exhibit novelty, and b) that it possess value. However, researchers investigating malevolent forms of creativity have claimed that the value condition is problematic insofar as we often ascribe creativity to products that are of entirely negative value for us. This has given rise to a number of modified conceptions of the (...)
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  13.  87
    Nietzsche on Instinct and Language ed. by João Constâncio and Maria João Mayer Branco (review).James Pearson - 2013 - Journal of Nietzsche Studies 44 (1):115-117.
    Nietzsche’s critique of the will to truth, and, more specifically, the metaphysical tradition, is inextricable from both his philosophy of language and his turn to physiology. Though the way in which Nietzsche conceived of the intertwinement of language, reason, and the body developed through the course of his philosophical maturation, it is nonetheless a recurrent motif spanning the breadth of his oeuvre. As the editors state in their introduction to Nietzsche on Instinct and Language (NIL), the volume aims at being (...)
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  14.  79
    Asking Students What Philosophers Teach.James Pearson - 2013 - Teaching Philosophy 36 (1):31-49.
    This essay argues for the value of teaching a unit that questions what it is that philosophers teach as a way of encouraging students to reflect on the nature of philosophy. I show how using ancient philosophy to frame this unit makes it especially urgent, since an important (and often overlooked) consequence of Socrates’s demarcation of philosophy from oratory is that philosophers are not in a position to teach anything. I have found that students are eager to engage the challenge (...)
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  15.  21
    Review of Sandra Lapointe (Ed) "Logic from Kant to Russell: Laying the Foundations of Analytic Philosophy". [REVIEW]James Pearson - 2019 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.
  16.  24
    James McElvenny. Language and Meaning in the Age of Modernism: C. K. Ogden and His Contemporaries. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2018. Pp. 200. $110.00. [REVIEW]James Pearson - 2019 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 9 (1):193-198.
  17.  30
    Caring for Quine's Don't Cares.James Pearson - 2017 - The Monist 100 (2):266-287.
    In Word and Object, W.V. Quine dismisses connotations that result from the work of explicating expressions as “don’t-cares.” This paper traces the history of this phrase to an algorithm that Quine developed in the 1950s, which became important in early computer engineering. Computer programmers eventually came to realize that it was in their best interests to abandon the “don’t-care” attitude. Similarly, I argue that naturalists who properly appreciate the communal nature of their inquiries have reason to adopt a more careful (...)
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  18.  54
    Interpreting Disturbed Minds: Donald Davidson and The White Ribbon.James J. Pearson - 2012 - Film-Philosophy 16 (1):1-15.
    Thomas Elsaesser claims the late Haneke as a director of ‘mind-game’ films, but his diagnosis of the appeal of such films fails to account for The White Ribbon . In this paper, I draw on the theory of radical interpretation developed by American philosopher Donald Davidson to uncover the film’s power. I argue that the focus on charity in Davidson’s account of the conditions under which an interpreter is able to find a foreign community intelligible illuminates the exquisite discomfort the (...)
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  19.  10
    Conflict and Contest in Nietzsche's Philosophy.James S. Pearson & Herman Siemens - 2018 - New York, NY, USA: Bloomsbury.
    While Nietzsche's works and ideas are relevant across the many branches of philosophy, the themes of contest and conflict have been mostly overlooked. Conflict and Contest in Nietzsche's Philosophy redresses this situation, arguing for the importance of these issues throughout Nietzsche's work. The volume has three key lines of inquiry: Nietzsche's ontology of conflict; Nietzsche's conception of the agon; and Nietzsche's warrior-philosophy. Under these three umbrellas is a collection of insightful and provocative essays considering, among other topics, Nietzsche's understanding of (...)
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  20. Nietzsche’s Philosophy of Conflict and the Logic of Organisational Struggle.James S. Pearson - 2018 - Dissertation,
  21. Unity in Strife: Nietzsche, Heraclitus and Schopenhauer.James S. Pearson - 2019 - In Herman Siemens & James S. Pearson (eds.), Conflict and Contest in Nietzsche's Philosophy. New York, NY, USA: pp. 44–69.
  22.  37
    Total Narcissism and the Uncanny: A New Interpretation of E.T.A. Hoffmann's “The Sandman”.James Pearson - 2013 - Angelaki 18 (2):17 - 27.
  23.  18
    Review of William Demopoulos "Logicism and Its Philosophical Legacy". [REVIEW]James Pearson - 2013 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews:online.
  24.  19
    On Catharsis, Conflict and the Coherence of Nietzsche’s Agonism.James Pearson - 2016 - Nietzsche Studien 45 (1):3-32.
    Name der Zeitschrift: Nietzsche-Studien Jahrgang: 45 Heft: 1 Seiten: 3-32.
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  25.  21
    Review of the book Disagreement by Brian Frances. [REVIEW]James Pearson - unknown
    Review of the book Disagreement by Bryan Frances. Cambridge: Polity Press, 2014.
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  26.  21
    Wittgenstein and the Utility of Disagreement.James Pearson - 2016 - Social Theory and Practice 42 (1):1-31.
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  27.  29
    Review of Benjamin Schnieder and Moritz Schulz "Themes From Early Analytic Philosophy: Essays in Honour of Wolfgang Kunne". [REVIEW]James Pearson - 2012 - Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews.
  28.  17
    Disagreement by Bryan Frances. [REVIEW]James Pearson - 2016 - Philosophy East and West 66 (1):357-359.
    Attention to the question of whether testimony is a distinctive source of knowledge is a comparatively recent development in Western epistemology. Does being told that p constitute reason for you to believe that p, independently of what you empirically establish about the speaker’s reliability, sincerity, and evaluative position? Still more recently — in just the last decade — Western epistemologists have become occupied with related problems concerning disagreement. What is the rational response, for instance, to discovering that an epistemic peer (...)
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  29.  16
    Gilbert Harman and Ernie Lepore, eds. A Companion to W.V.O. Quine. [REVIEW]James Pearson - 2016 - Journal for the History of Analytical Philosophy 4 (2).
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  30.  1
    Book Review: The body in Spinoza and Nietzsche by Razvan Ioan, London, Palgrave Macmillan, 2019, 251 pp., 53.49€ (paper back), ISBN: 978-3-030-20987-2. [REVIEW]James S. Pearson - forthcoming - Global Intellectual History.
  31.  1
    What Welby Wanted.James Pearson - 2022 - In Jeanne Peijnenburg & Sander Verhaegh (eds.), Women in the History of Analytic Philosophy. Cham: Springer. pp. 23-43.
    Although the significs movement that Victoria, Lady Welby (1837–1912) inspired was dedicated to better understanding meaning, she has largely been forgotten by analytic philosophers of language. Significs was to educate “the great world of hearers and the growing world of readers” to better interpret science and philosophy, evincing a focus on the audience for intellectual activity that it remains vital for academics to consider. Her arguments that the metaphorical associations of terminology are part of their significance for others also pertain (...)
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