The first six volumes of the Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce included Peirce’s main writings in general philosophy, logic (deductive, inductive, and symbolic), pragmatism, and metaphysics. Volumes VII and VIII are a continuation of this series. Originally published as two separate volumes, they now appear in one book as part of the Belknap Press edition. Volume VII contains papers on experimental science, scientific method, and philosophy of mind. Volume VIII contains selections from Peirce’s reviews and correspondence and a bibliography of his published works, speeches and correspondence, and works by other authors which quote or describe manuscripts by Peirce which are not included in Volumes I–VIII of Collected Papers.
As is true of the series as a whole, the material in these volumes is not readily accessible elsewhere. Many of the manuscripts have never been published before, and the previously published material which is included is widely scattered in a number of journals.
Peirce’s work in experimental science played an important role in his life and in the formation of his philosophy, and Volume VII is designed to show how the principal focus of his attention shifted from this sphere to the methods of science and finally to speculative metaphysics. Thus it includes his only published article in experimental psychology and two short pieces on gravity as well as the most important part of “The Logic of 1873” (in which pragmatism was first formulated in writing); “The Logic of Drawing History from Ancient Documents,” discussion of the historical method; “Economy of Research” (1879), containing many pertinent reflections on scientific methodology of interest to research directors today; and much more.
America’s first original philosopher and logician, and the founder of the philosophy of pragmatism, Peirce was also influential in shaping the thinking of such figures as William James and John Dewey. The reviews and correspondence contained in Volume VIII show his attitude toward these philosophies and illustrate the nature of his relationships with the great thinkers of his day.
The bibliography in Volume VIII lists chronologically all of Peirce’s known published works, giving a clear picture of the development of his thought from 1860 through 1911. It is more complete than any published so far in that many new items are included and items previously listed in different sources are here brought together.
These volumes will be of great value to all persons interested in philosophy, scientific method, psychology, the methodology of history, and American studies in general.