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catalogue – 43669
Until 01.01.2019 - Scientific Yearbook of the Institute of Philosophy and Law of the Ural Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences

ISSN 2686-7206 (Print)

ISSN 2686-925X (Оnlinе)

Garreta Guillaume

Abstract: Are we condemned to the sterile dichotomy between ethical reason and instrumental reason, and to the alternative of their (impossible) cooperation or their (conflicting) subordination? In the theory of knowledge as philosophy of action, the pragmatist school, while remaining faithful to the experimental spirit of modernity, fundamentally challenges the relevance, necessity or even the reality of such a distinction. First, the article proposes a short description of the pragmatist attitude in philosophy, and then it specifies how John Dewey meant to consider the conduct and the intelligent conduct in particular in terms of situational inquiry by tracing the outlines of a pragmatist conception of rationality. The third section considers the objection of moral relativism often made against theories of rationality, thus questioning the idea of transcendent foundation and origin of evaluating standards of actions. Finally, the theory of the inquiry and the outline of a pragmatist ethics are put in use in a fourth section to clear the nature and certain conditions of the emergence of “publics”, sociopolitical bodies needed to control democratic orientations and decisions in contemporary societies.

Keywords: Dewey, pragmatism, situation, inquiry, rationality as situational inquiry, pragmatist ethics, reflexive publics.

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