Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Eldridge, Michael. Review of David L. Hildebrand, JOHN DEWEY. NDPR (July 2010).

Hildebrand, David L. John Dewey: a Beginner's Guide. Oxford: Oneworld, 2008.

The most recent addition to the genre that includes books by Sidney Hook (1939), Richard Bernstein (1966), James Campbell (1995), and Raymond Boisvert (1998), Hildebrand's introduction is a knowledgeable and clearly written exposition of John Dewey's thought for those with little or no philosophical preparation and/or no background in Dewey.

Thus it is of interest to academic philosophers for its value as a course text but also to others, philosophers or not, who are just coming to Dewey. Either way it is a reliable -- and readable -- guide to Dewey's thought, making use of the immense amount of recent Dewey scholarship. One should, however, not expect a critical assessment, despite the blurb on the back cover that says "This concise and critical look at Dewey's work". The author explicitly says in the preface that his primary purpose was "to give the most detail of the widest range of Dewey's views" (xi). It is a well-informed work of exposition with only occasional challenges to others' interpretations. . . .

Read the rest here: http://ndpr.nd.edu/review.cfm?id=20607.

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