Maarten Maartensz:    Philosophical Dictionary | Filosofisch Woordenboek                      

 J - James, William


William James: 1842-1910, American psychologist and philosopher, one of the founders of pragmatism.

James was a great writer and a great psychologist, whose The Principles of Psychology should be read by anyone interested in either psychology or philosophy. He was a good personal friend of Charles Sanders Peirce, who influenced him, and whom he helped in later life. With Peirce and Schiller he was one of the founders of (philosophical) pragmatism, although Peirce thought that James did not understand him well.

James's philosophical books are well-written but not very clear, though his book on religion and mysticism, in which he does not expound much of his own philosophy, The varieties of religious experience, is a classic on religion and mysticism.

See also: Clifford, Peirce, Pragmatism


Principles of Psychology, The will to believe

 Original: Jan 10, 2004                                                Last edited: 08 February 2012.   Top