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The power of pragmatism – Knowledge production and social inquiry - Manchester Scholarship Online
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The power of pragmatism: Knowledge production and social inquiry

Jane Wills and Robert Lake


This book makes the case for a pragmatist approach to the practice of social inquiry and knowledge production. Through diverse examples from multiple disciplines, contributors explore the power of pragmatism to inform a practice of inquiry that is democratic, community-centred, problem-oriented and experimental. Drawing from both classical and neo-pragmatist perspectives, the book advances a pragmatist sensibility in which truth and knowledge are contingent rather than universal, made rather than found, provisional rather than dogmatic, subject to continuous experimentation rather than ultimat ... More

Keywords: pragmatism, knowledge production, social inquiry, social research, research philosophy, research practice, democracy, community, John Dewey, Richard Rorty

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2020 Print ISBN-13: 9781526134943
Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2021 DOI:10.7765/9781526134950


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jane Wills, editor
University of Exeter

Robert Lake, editor
Rutgers University

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Part I The power of pragmatism

1 Introduction: The power of pragmatism

Jane Wills and Robert W. Lake

Part II Key thinkers, core ideas and their application to social research

Part III ‘Truth’, epistemic injustice and academic practice

Part IV Disciplinary applications in pragmatic research

13 Exploring possibilities for a pragmatic orientation in development studies

Alireza F. Farahani and Azadeh Hadizadeh Esfahani

Part V Conclusion and postscript

End Matter