Ernst Mach and pragmatism
the case of Mach's popular scientific lectures (1895)
The relation of Logical Empiricism and North-American Pragmatism has been increasingly investigated in the last decade. This seems reasonable enough given the various personal and scholarly exchanges between the Vienna Circle and Berlin Group with pragmatist philosophers after World War I leading up to the transfer and transformation of Logical Empiricism caused by the rise of National Socialism. But there was a significant prehistory of this philosophical encounter: the relation of Ernst Mach and US-pragmatism. This mostly ignored philosophical interaction can be exemplified with Mach's Popular Scientific Lectures. One result of this case study is that pragmatic philosophy was already present in Austria and Germany in parallel to the interaction with Paul Carus, Charles S. Peirce, William James, and John Dewey, even if not under this specific notion and label. Mach, together with Wilhelm Jerusalem, had already claimed pragmatic positions in epistemology and methodology before his reading of Peirce and encounter with James.
Stadler, F. (2017)., Ernst Mach and pragmatism: the case of Mach's popular scientific lectures (1895), in F. Stadler, N. Weidtmann & S. Pihlström (eds.), Logical empiricism and pragmatism, Dordrecht, Springer, pp. 3-14.
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