Date of Award

Spring 2001

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Rossi, Philip

Second Advisor

Carey, Patrick

Third Advisor

Hinze, Christine F.


The choice of my dissertation topic originated in a deep interest in the work of H. Richard Niebuhr, on the one hand, and in the thought of the classic tradition in American philosophy, on the other hand. I had been studying both Niebuhr and the pragmatists for some time, and I was hoping to explore more fully the relationship between them in my dissertation. As a way of preparing for my dissertation, I did a reading course on H. Richard Niebuhr and the classic American philosophers. In this course, I read not only the works of Niebuhr and the pragmatists, but also some of the secondary literature that dealt with the relationship between Niebuhr and the pragmatic tradition. The net result of reading the primary texts of Niebuhr and the pragmatists, on the one hand, and reading the secondary literature on Niebuhr and the pragmatists, on the other, was a feeling of disconnection. There was something not quite right in the way the secondary literature treated Niebuhr's relationship to the pragmatists. My dissatisfaction with this secondary literature can be grouped under three areas...



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