Pragmatism : a philosophy of practice

Simpson, Barbara; Cassell, Catherine and Cunliffe, Ann L and Grandy, Gina, eds. (2018) Pragmatism : a philosophy of practice. In: SAGE Handbook of Qualitative Business and Management Research Methods. Sage Publications, London, pp. 54-68. ISBN 9781526429261

[thumbnail of Simpson-SAGE2017-Pragmatism-a-philosophy-of-practice]
Text. Filename: Simpson_SAGE2017_Pragmatism_a_philosophy_of_practice.pdf
Accepted Author Manuscript

Download (508kB)| Preview


This chapter takes seriously the rich philosophical underpinnings of the American Pragmatist tradition, which is positioned here as a process and practice-based orientation that has significant potential as a way of seeing the unfolding, dynamic continuity of living organisational experience. The intellectual contributions of the Classical Pragmatists, Charles Sanders Peirce, William James, John Dewey, and Gorger Herbert Mead, are summarised, and six key Pragmatist concepts are distilled out of this analysis: Abduction, Inquiry, Habit, Social Selves, Gestural Conversation, and Trans-action. These six concepts are offered as empirical sensitisations in the inquiries into the coordinated, performative actions that emerge in organisational settings.