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Dewey and Peirce, the Philosopher's Philosopher


by Richard S. Prawat — 2001

Three arguments are presented in this article that point to discontinuity rather than continuity in John Dewey's philosophical views. First, the author examines and critiques the most comprehensive current account of the development of Dewey's thinking early to late based on the assumption of continuity. Contrary to this account, it is argued, Dewey dramatically changed his views about the role of action, language, and quality in knowledge construction from mid-career on. In the second and third sections of the paper, numerous examples are presented showing how closely Dewey's later ideas map onto those of the brilliant but less known originator of pragmatism, Charles Sanders Peirce. The intent in all three sections of the paper is to demonstrate the magnitude of Dewey's debt to Peirce.


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 103 Number 4, 2001, p. 667-721
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 10779, Date Accessed: 10/21/2017 4:34:42 AM

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About the Author
  • Richard Prawat
    Michigan State University
    E-mail Author
    RICHARD S. PRAWAT is professor of educational psychology and teacher education and chair of the Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Special Education at Michigan State University. He is the author of a companion piece entitled, “The Two Faces of Deweyan Pragmatism: Inductionism Versus Social Constructivm” (Teachers College Record, forthcoming).
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