In recent years, opposition to Communism has emerged as Sidney Hook’s central philosophical legacy in the eyes of scholars and historians, who tend to ignore all of Hook’s pre-Cold War philosophical contributions. Furthermore, critics who treat Hook’s anti-Communism often accuse him of abandoning pragmatism for dogmatism in his later career. In this essay, I argue that Hook’s long-standing fight against Communism should be understood as an unwavering application of the democratic method in line with his mentor John Dewey’s understanding of pragmatism as well as the commitment to scientific empiricism espoused by earlier pragmatists C. S. Peirce and William James.

Project Muse URL