"I am completely smitten with the Lunch with Books patrons...who welcomed me like a long-lost cousin. It takes two to have a successful reading: an enthusiastic presenter and an engaged audience, and boy did the stars align for us." -Marie Manilla, Still Life with Plums

"Lunch With Books is an outstanding program -- one of the best in the country." -NPR Journalist Matthew Algeo, The President is a Sick Man

"With a new book in hand, I’ve visited a lot of libraries lately, and I think the Ohio County Public Library is my all-time favorite. People are kind and welcoming, and deeply appreciate a visiting writer." -Jaimy Gordon, Lord of Misrule (National Book Award)

“I wanted the book launch to be at Lunch With Books because it is the best library book program in West Virginia and because Wheeling and the Wheeling area was centrally involved in so many of the firsts in West Virginia sports.” –Bob Barnett, Hillside Fields: A History of Sports in West Virginia

This blog is being discontinued.

This blog is being discontinued.
Please visit: www.ohiocountylibrary.org/calendar

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

American Pragmatism

Aug 14th, 2007, Dr. Richard Mullin

On Tuesday, August 14th at noon, Dr. Richard P. Mullin, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Wheeling Jesuit University, will discuss his new book: The Soul of Classical American Philosophy: The Ethical and Spiritual Insights of William James, Josiah Royce, and Charles Sanders Peirce.
The books presents the thought of three Americans whose deep and rich insights can reawaken the best that the human spirit has to offer. William James, Josiah Royce, and Charles Sanders Peirce lived and wrote at the end of the nineteenth and beginning of the twentieth centuries, but their message rings true for us today.

Genuine philosophy signifies a way of life. William James pointed out that philosophy throws far-flashing beams of light without which we could not get along. James, Royce, and Peirce emphasized the primacy of ethics and the integration of rigorous scientific thinking with openness to religious faith.

The defining character of American philosophy is pragmatism. Erroneous notions of pragmatism abound, but its true meaning is this: the things that we really believe are those that we put into practice. In our present culture, many intellectual currents deny free will, dismiss the idea of community as nothing but a network of economic relations, and reduce the meaning of human existence to acquisitive materialism. The classical pragmatists, by contrast, offer a worldview that is scientific without being materialistic and which shows reverence for the communal and spiritual aspects of human existence.

The Soul of Classical American Philosophy serves to introduce the thought of James, Royce, and Peirce to non-specialists while offering a fresh interpretation to hold the interest of readers familiar with this area. Philosophy, and American life in general, can be rejuvenated by a drink from the spring of Classical American Philosophy.

Richard Mullin earned his master’s and doctorate degrees in philosophy from Duquesne University. After teaching philosophy for seven years at St. Bernard College in Alabama, Mullin joined the faculty at Wheeling Jesuit University where he taught for thirty years. He has lectured on American Philosophy in Slovenia and Slovakia, and has presented numerous papers to the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy throughout the United States and once in Poland.

Since retiring from full-time teaching his main occupation is writing. He and his wife, Marian, reside in Wheeling. The couple has three sons. Matthew, his wife, Dana, and their two daughters, reside in Fishers, Indiana; Marcus and his wife, Lisa, live in Wheeling; and Richard is a resident of Morgantown, West Virginia.
Copies of The Soul of Classical American Philosophy will be available for purchase and signing. For more information, please call the library at 304-232-0244.

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Book Discussion Groups

The Ohio County Public Library facilitates book discussion groups for both young adults and adults. Currently, the OCPL offers two adult groups, which meet on the first Monday and third Thursday of each month.

In addition to its own growing collection, the OCPL has access to the book discussion collection of the West Virginia Library Commission.

To join or form a book discussion group, or for more information, please call 304-232-0244.

Meeting of the Minds Philosophy Group

The Meeting of the Minds Philosophic Inquiry Forum is facilitated by David Weimer. The group meets virtually every Tuesday at 6 PM. Call the library for meeting room locations.

For more information, visit www.firstknowthyself.org/m&mphilosophy.htm or contact group organizer, David Weimer, at 740 526-0985 or by email at dwwweimer@comcast.net..