John Dewey

Rethinking Our Time

By Raymond D. Boisvert

Subjects: Education
Series: SUNY series, The Philosophy of Education
Paperback : 9780791435304, 189 pages, October 1997
Hardcover : 9780791435298, 189 pages, October 1997

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Table of contents

List of Illustrations



The "Naissance" and "Renaissance" of American Philosophy

Dewey's Reconstruction of the Tradition

1. The Life-World

Lived Experience

The Fallacy of Intellectualism

The Primacy of Interaction

Temporality and Possibility


Evaluating Philosophy

2. Thinking

Against Epistemology

Copernican Revolutions

Spectators or Inquirers?

The Traits of Inquiry

3. Democracy

Winthrop, Locke, and Dewey

Conjoint, Communicated Experience

Freedom as Growth

Equality as Individuality

4. The Public

Mass or Public?

Problems of the Public

Conditions for Reviving the Public

An Effective Public

5. Educating

A Simple Credo

Beyond Modern Man


Education is an End in Itself

Education and Democracy

Moral Education

6. Making

Art versus arts


Imagination, Communication, and Expression

Distraction versus Participation

7. Devotion

Religious versus Religion

The "Load" Carried by Traditional Religions




8. Conclusion

Postmodern or Polytemporal?

Dewey's Relevance

Appendix A: Biographical Data

Appendix B: Dewey in Cyberspace




A concise, eminently readable introduction to the thought of America's most prominent philosopher.


CHOICE 1998 Outstanding Academic Books

Written in a manner accessible to non-specialists, this book provides an introduction to all areas central to John Dewey's philosophy: aesthetics, social and political philosophy, education, the philosophy of religion, and theory of knowledge. Boisvert situates Dewey as a thinker who could appreciate the advance of science while remaining an "empirical naturalist" committed to the revelatory powers of lived experience.

Raymond D. Boisvert is Professor of Philosophy at Siena College. He is the author of Dewey's Metaphysics.


"Ray Boisvert describes his little book as a 'primer,' whose 'aim is to serve as a brief and generally accessible introduction to Dewey's philosophy. ' He succeeds admirably … Boisvert, while also limiting himself to exposition, attempts to articulate Dewey's thinking in terms of the philosophic and public discourse of our time. " — International Studies in Philosophy

"This book is superbly written: clear, elegant, scholarly. It is a model of lucidity by a major Dewey scholar. It is far better than anything else in print as an introduction to the thought of John Dewey. Boisvert illuminates themes in Dewey with a variety of highly interesting examples drawn from literature, contemporary French and British philosophy, and science. This will be the book people will buy to get an overview of a major American philosopher. " — Thomas Alexander, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale

"This book helpfully integrates Dewey's diverse theories in terms of three central themes that reappear throughout his wide-ranging thought: the rejection of simple, monistic solutions, the challenging of purificationist reductions, and the refusal of disembodied idealisms. The author touches on all of the major areas where Dewey made a significant contribution to philosophy, from metaphysics and theory of knowledge to ethics, politics, and the philosophy of art, education, and religion. " — Richard Shusterman, Temple University