This fifth volume of the Middle Works contains Ethics by John Dewey and his former colleague at the University of Michigan, James H. Tufts, which appeared as one of the last in the Holt American Science series of textbooks. Within some six months after publication, Ethics was adopted as a textbook by thirty colleges. The book continued to be extremely popular and widely used, and was reprinted twenty-five times before both authors completely revised their respective parts for the new 1932 edition.
Up to the time Ethics was published, Dewey’s approach to ethics was known primarily from two short publications that were developed for use by his classes at the University of Michigan: Outlines of a Critical Theory of Ethics (1891) and The Study of Ethics: A Syllabus (1894). Charles Stevenson notes in his Introduction to the present edition that Ethics afforded Dewey an opportunity to preserve and enrich the content of those earlier works and at the same time to expound his position in a more systematic manner.
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Charles Stevenson is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Michigan. Among his best-known works are Facts and Values and Ethics and Language.Review:
“It makes the study of ethics appear practical, vital, pertinent to affairs, capable of contributing to the settlement of problems that contemporary mankind is really in doubt about. This is not only a great virtue but also a curiously rare one, in this class of books.”—Arthur O. Lovejoy, American Journal of Theology
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