The Hidden God: Pragmatism and Posthumanism in American Thought

Hardcover | August 18, 2015

byRyan White

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The Hidden God revisits the origins of American pragmatism and finds a nascent "posthumanist" critique shaping early modern thought. By reaching as far back as the Calvinist arguments of the American Puritans and their struggle to know a "hidden God," this book brings American pragmatism closer to contemporary critical theory.

Ryan White reads the writings of key American philosophers, including Jonathan Edwards, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William James, and Charles Sanders Peirce, against modern theoretical works by Niklas Luhmann, Richard Rorty, Jacques Derrida, Sharon Cameron, Cary Wolfe, and Gregory Bateson. This juxtaposition isolates the distinctly posthumanist form of pragmatism that began to arise in these early texts, challenging the accepted genealogy of pragmatic discourse and common definitions of posthumanist critique. Its rigorously theoretical perspective has wide implications for humanities research, enriching investigations into literature, history, politics, and art.

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The Hidden God revisits the origins of American pragmatism and finds a nascent "posthumanist" critique shaping early modern thought. By reaching as far back as the Calvinist arguments of the American Puritans and their struggle to know a "hidden God," this book brings American pragmatism closer to contemporary critical theory.Ryan Whi...

Ryan White is a Mellon postdoctoral fellow at Rice University. He specializes in American philosophy and pragmatism, nineteenth- and twentieth-century American literature, contemporary continental philosophy and critical theory, and systems theory. He has taught at the University of Kentucky and Austin Community College. His work has ...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:248 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.98 inPublished:August 18, 2015Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231171005

ISBN - 13:9780231171007

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgmentsIntroduction: Observing Modernity in America1. The Double Consciousness: American Thought and the Theory of Theory2. Inside-Out: Pragmatism and the Meaning of America3. On True Virtue: Jonathan Edwards and the Ethics of Self-Reference4. Neither Here nor There: Grief and Absence in Emerson's "Experience"5. Every Language Is Foreign: Self and Cybernetics in the Event-Machine6. The Cybernetic Imaginary: Musement and the Unsaying of TheoryNotesIndex

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Those willing to enter these waters will find the journey stimulating.