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Philosophy Scare : The Politics of Reason in the Early Cold War (Hardcover) (John McCumber)
About this item
This book presents John McCumber’s extensive researches into the fascinating story of how a New and Improved Philosophy” was born during the early Cold War period. McCumber argues that underlying the search for truth through the application of logic and mathematics to experience was the repressive politics of the McCarthy Era. Utilizing ideas from both Kuhn and Foucault he uncovers the origins of the paradigm of philosophy as a science which came to dominate much of American intellectual life in general and the teaching of philosophy in particular in the years 1947-1959 and whose effects are still felt today. McCumber argues outward from the particularly egregious example of how philosophy came to be taught at UCLA during this period to discussions of the rise of analytic philosophy, rational choice theory, and reductionistic theories of the stratified sciences. Tellingly, he identifies stealth philosophy” as one aspect of Cold War mentality: philosophy professors just didn’t talk about certain things (such as Marxism) or publicly take them seriously for fear that the general public could not handle it. As a consequence they preferred to stay out of the public eye as much as possible, and even out of the life of the rest of the university. Philosophy departments across the country became hermetically sealed bastions of politically inconsequential conceptual analysis. This bold and original work makes an important contribution to the history of American philosophy and Cold War studies.
Number of Pages: 218
Genre: Philosophy, History, Political Science
Sub-Genre: Philosophy, History
Publisher: Univ of Chicago Pr
Author: John McCumber
Street Date: September 15, 2016
Item Number (DPCI): 248-22-2120
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