Pragmatismus. Ein neuer Name für einige alte Wege des Denkens
EPUB EBook by William James
EBook DescriptionCanadians of a certain age may recall a brilliant series of commercials put out by Carlsberg years ago. Pragmatismus. Ein neuer Name fü download; r einige alte Wege des Denkens EPUB EBookAimed at thirty- EPUBsomething men, they cleverly extolled the joys of adulthood.A typical spot showed a horny couple sharing a pre-coital embrace in a motel room.The voiceover narrator explains: “A friend of mine once tried to tell me that the best sex I’d ever have would be with my wife.”Pause.“He was right.”And then the slogan: “Welcome to your Carlsberg years.” (Youtube is pretending not to know what commercial I’m talking about, and keeps recommending instead this cruelly hilarious clip of a shitfaced Orson Welles – at once the saddest and funniest thing ever.)
Well, I’ve decided that pragmatism is a philosophy for people in their Carlsberg years.It has a sort of adult-contemporary vibe to it. By design, it’s very middle of the road.This sounds like a dig, but it’s really not.The fact is, I kinda like Wilco – and I kinda like William James.Warmed-over Nietzscheanism, a rakish dash of critical theory, a bit of Bataille when you’re feeling frisky: that’s all very well for your twenties, but sooner or later you settle down, buy a Suzuki Swift and start wondering how you’re going to get rid of that tribal tattoo on your arm. Nothing tragic about that.
I won’t bore you with a detailed summary of pragmatism—that’s what Wikipedia’s for—but I’d just suggest that, if you’re reading this, you’re most likely, in some corner of your harried soul, a pragmatist already.Pragmatism—of the unofficial, half-assed variety—has become the default mode for most (secular) Westerners.This isn’t James’ doing, exactly.He just gave a local habitation and a name to something that was floating around in the zeitgeist.
If you’re interested in pragmatism itself, you should probably just go straight to Richard Rorty for the modern-dress version.The only reason to read James is for the beauty of his prose—and for the particular tang of his humour and sanity.Even when he’s discussing the most dry-as-dust concepts, he can’t help being earthy and vivid:
Matter is indeed infinitely and incredibly refined.To any one who has ever looked on the face of a dead child or parent the mere fact that matter could have taken for a time that precious from, ought to make matter sacred ever after...That beloved incarnation was among matter’s possibilities.
When you remember that James himself lost a child, you start to realize just how much passion and seriousness went into the man’s writing.Already in the 19th century, there was a joke going around that William James was a novelist disguised as a psychologist, while his brother Henry was a psychologist trying to write novels. At this point in my life, William suddenly seems a lot more interesting and relevant than Henry, but that’s probably just another sign that I’ve entered my Carlsberg years.
Like this book? Read online this: Henry James and the Writing of Race and Nation, Mein neuer Mitbewohner - Erotische Kurzgeschichte.
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