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(1995) The prism of the self, Dordrecht, Springer.

Truth in the experience of political actors

William James on democratic action

Joshua Miller

pp. 131-146

To treat James as a political theorist, or even as a thinker with serious political concerns, may seem strange to those familiar with traditional readings of him as a philosopher, psychologist, or interpreter of religious experience. Although James has frequently been dismissed as a radical individualist who hated institutions, his lack of interest in politics has been exaggerated.1 Admittedly, his attention to political theory was not comparable to his devotion to philosophy, psychology, and the supernatural. Although his ">Principles of Psychology frequently draws on Hobbes's Leviathan, James made few if any references in his writings and letters to Plato's Republic, Aristotle's Politics, Machiavelli, Locke's Treatises of Government, Rousseau, Tocqueville, or Marx. Nevertheless, much of James's writing is implicitly related to political themes, and toward the end of his life it became explicitly political.2

Publication details

DOI: 10.1007/978-94-015-8408-1_9

Full citation:

Miller, (1995)., Truth in the experience of political actors: William James on democratic action, in S. Crowell (ed.), The prism of the self, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 131-146.

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