Pragmatism is an American philosophical worldview and intellectual movement that has had significant influence on legal discourse and many other disciplines within American culture. Considered the American philosophy, pragmatism's principles penetrate intellectual and practical legal engagements, entailing theories of human behavior and knowledge, a critique of Western philosophy, and an optimistic moral prescription.

Pragmatism's basic claim is that the meaning and truth of any theoretical or metaphysical concept depends on its practical effect. As a theory of human behavior, pragmatism portrays humans as problemsolving organisms, for whom action prevails over thought, who choose among alternatives according to belief, intuition, or will, not through deductive logic. As a theory of knowledge, pragmatism holds suspect claims for truth or metaphysics and provides a critique of Western philosophic metaphysical ...

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