October 1, 2015

Oliver Wendell Holmes and Pragmatism

Allen Mendenhall, Auburn University, is publishing Pragmatism on the Shoulders of Emerson: Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.'s Jurisprudence as a Synthesis of Emerson, Peirce, James, and Dewey in volume 48 of the South Carolina Review (2015). Here is the abstract.
Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. turned forty in 1881. The publication of The Common Law that year afforded him the opportunity to express his jurisprudence to a wide audience. Over the next year, he would become a professor at Harvard Law School and then, a few months later, an associate justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. Emerson died in 1882, and Holmes began to articulate Emersonian pragmatism in new ways more suited for the industrial, post-Civil War environment in which transcendentalism no longer held credence. This essay examines Holmes's adaptation of Emersonian pragmatism as a synthesis of some pragmatic theories of C.S. Peirce, William James, and John Dewey.
Download the article from SSRN at the link.

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