Pragmatism in Philosophy of Education: A Contemporary Outlook

Terna Patrick Francis
Keywords: Pragmatism, Philosophy, Education, Contemporary, Inquiry
Tropical Journal of Arts and Humanities 2020 2(1), 64-72. Published: July 16, 2020


Various schools of thought and philosophical systems have originated in philosophy in the course of time. One popular philosophy in the modern period is pragmatism. The core pragmatic maxim consists in a rule for clarifying the meaning of hypotheses by tracing their ‗practical consequences‘ – their implications for experience in specific situations. The thrust of this paper is to analyse pragmatism, especially the contributions of Dewey, Addams and William James. The study employed the qualitative research design. Data was derived from secondary sources comprising books, journals, scholarly papers and the internet. The expository and evaluative methods are employed for analysis. This study discovered that pragmatism has produced a distinctive epistemological outlook: a fallibilist, anti-Cartesian explication of the norms that govern inquiry. Within that broad outlook, though, early pragmatists split significantly over questions of realism broadly conceived – essentially, whether pragmatism should conceive itself as a scientific philosophy holding monism about truth following Peirce, or a more broad-based alethic pluralism following James and Dewey. What is important is that pragmatism has influenced America and different parts of the world in many ways and deserves further inquiry in contemporary times.