You are not currently logged in.
Access JSTOR through your library or other institution:
Review: PHILOSOPHY AS PERPETUAL MOTION: PRAGMATISM MOVES ON: The Pragmatic Turn by Richard J. Bernstein
Reviewed Works: The Pragmatic Turn by Richard J. Bernstein; Pragmatism as Transition: Historicity and Hope in James, Dewey, and Rorty by Colin Koopman
Review by: Martin Jay
History and Theory
Vol. 50, No. 3 (October 2011), pp. 425-432
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41300104
Page Count: 8
Preview not available
Two new books about the Pragmatist tradition, Richard Bernstein's The Pragmatic Turn and Colin Koopman ' s Pragmatism as Transition, represent respectively a summing up of the past half-century of the tradition's history and a possible program for its future development. Bernstein ecumenically considers the achievements of a wide range of thinkers from Peirce, Dewey, and James to Brandom, Putnam, and Rorty, drawing valuable lessons from each, while not sparing criticism of their flaws. Koopman also tries to bridge the gap between what he calls "classicopragmatism" and "neopragmatism," although he finds more to admire in Rorty than in his predecessors. Whereas Bernstein attempts to supplement the pragmatist tradition by turning to Habermas, Koopman finds his inspiration in Foucault. Both authors emphasize the historicist, evolutionary, and transitionalist implications of pragmatism, paying as a result insufficient attention to the historical possibilities of repetition, rupture, discontinuity, and the unexpected event. In terms of the political implications they draw, Koopman advocates a meliorist incrementalism that lacks any real bite, while Bernstein expresses dissatisfaction with the democratic pieties of Rorty's final work, but doesn't really provide a sustained alternative.
History and Theory © 2011 Wesleyan University