William James

William James (January 11, 1842 August 26, 1910) was an American philosopher, historian, and psychologist, and the first educator to offer a psychology course in the United States.

James is considered to be a leading thinker of the late 19th century, one of the most influential philosophers of the United States, and the “Father of American psychology.”Along with Charles Sanders Peirce, James established the philosophical school known as pragmatism, and is also cited as one of the founders of functional psychology. A Review of General Psychology analysis, published in 2002, ranked James as the 14th most eminent psychologist of the 20th century.

A survey published in American Psychologist in 1991 ranked James’s reputation in second place,
after Wilhelm Wundt, who is widely regarded as the founder of experimental psychology.

James also developed the philosophical perspective known as radical empiricism. James’s work has influenced philosophers and academics such as mile Durkheim, W. E. B. Du Bois, Edmund Husserl, Bertrand Russell, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Hilary Putnam, Richard Rorty, and Marilynne Robinson.Born into a wealthy family, James was the son of the Swedenborgian theologian Henry James Sr. and the brother of both the prominent novelist Henry James and the diarist Alice James. James trained as a physician and taught anatomy at Harvard, but never practiced medicine. Instead he pursued his interests in psychology and then philosophy. James wrote widely on many topics, including epistemology, education, metaphysics, psychology, religion, and mysticism. Among his most influential books are The Principles of Psychology, a groundbreaking text in the field of psychology; Essays in Radical Empiricism, an important text in philosophy; and The Varieties of Religious Experience, an investigation of different forms of religious experience, including theories on mind-cure.


eBooks: A Pluralistic Universe | A Short History of H. M. S. Victory | Billy and Hans, My Squirrel Friends | Essays in Radical Empiricism | Memories and Studies | Modern Musical Drift | On the track of Ulysses | Our Benevolent Feudalism | Pragmatism | Psychology | Seeds of Michigan Weeds | Shakespeare the Boy | Some Forerunners of Italian Opera | Talks To Teachers On Psychology; And To Students On Some Of Life’s Ideals | The American Church Dictionary and Cyclopedia | The Autobiography of a Journalist, Vol. 1 | The Autobiography of a Journalist, Vol. 2 | The Barrel Mystery | The Cretan Insurrection of 1866, 67 and 68 | The Heavens Above | The Letters of William James, Vol. II | The Meaning of Truth | The Principles of Psychology, Volume 1 of 2 | The Principles of Psychology, Volume 2 of 2 | The Varieties of Religious Experiance | The Will to Believe, and Other Essays in Popular Philosophy | Twenty-Five Years in the Black Belt | World Stories Retold for Modern Boys and Girls

Works by William James: