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date: 06 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Alain Locke (1885–1954) was the first African American Rhodes Scholar (1907–1910) who received a PhD in philosophy from Harvard (1918), and he was the intellectual architect of the Harlem Renaissance. Leonard Harris’s search for Locke included tracking down his unburied ashes and considering the obstacles preventing publications about and by Locke. Locke was the author of critical pragmatism and of fallibalism, or clarifying the warrant of a hypothesis by considering consequences. He shifted the empiricism of classical pragmatism by rejecting “science” as a dominant model for reasoning and promoting a strong account of cosmopolitanism, as contrary to racial nationalism. Locke’s value relativism is contrary to value absolutism, including Marx’s labor theory of value and Kant’s transcendentalism. Locke was finally interned in the Congressional Cemetery, September 13, 2014, sixty years after his death.

Keywords: Alain Locke, Harlem Renaissance, value relativism, critical pragmatism, fallibalism

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