Pulitzer Prize to Louis Menand
The Graduate Center's recently appointed
Distinguished Professor of English Louis Menand has just
crossed disciplines to stellar effect, winning the 2002 Pulitzer
Prize in history for The Metaphysical Club: A Story of Ideas
in America. This study, widely acclaimed when it appeared
in 2001, examines the lives and work of four major American
thinkers, William James, Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., Charles
Sanders Pierce, and a late-comer, Thomas Dewey.
The club referred to in the title was a conversational salon
formed in 1872 by young intellectuals in Cambridge, Massa-chusetts.
Though it lasted only a brief time, Menand establishes it as
being crucial to the later development of that quintessentially
American philosophy, pragmatism.