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Philosophy of pragmatism under the microscope

Feb. 18, 2011

KALAMAZOO--The philosophy of pragmatism will be explored in early March when a communication scholar visits the Western Michigan University campus.

Photo of Dr. Gregory J. Shepherd.Dr. Gregory J. Shepherd, dean of the Sripps College of Communication and professor of communication studies at Ohio University, will speak from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, March 9, in Room 1028 of Brown Hall. His presentation, titled "Communication and the Pragmatic Tradition," is free and open to the public.

In his presentation, Shepherd will explore pragmatism as a distinctively American philosophy. Born in Jefferson's America, the pragmatic tradition puts communication at the heart of its philosophy and holds implications for teaching, research and service to the community.

An internationally renowned communication theorist and philosopher, Shepherd is best known for his scholarship on communication theory and American pragmatism. He is co-editor with Eric Rothenbuhler of "Communication and Community" published in 2001; co‐editor with Jeff St. John and Ted Striphas of "Communication as …: Perspectives on Theory," published in 2006; and the author of numerous book chapters and journal articles. He is the winner of a number of outstanding teacher awards, including the Central States Communication Association Outstanding Young Teacher Award, as well as a W.T. Kemper Fellowship for Teaching Excellence.

Shepherd's visit is co-sponsored by the WMU School of Communication and Center for the Study of Ethics in Society and is through the Visiting Scholars and Artist Program. Established in 1960, the Visiting Scholars and Artists Program significantly contributes to the intellectual life of WMU and the community. Since the program began, it has supported more 600 visits by scholars and artists representing more than 60 academic disciplines.

For more information, call Dr. Autumn Edwards, associate professor of communication, at (269) 387-0358.

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Media contact: Mark Schwerin, (269) 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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