Study Guide

The Metaphysical Club: A Story of Ideas in America - Part 3, Chapter 9 The Metaphysical Club, Section 2 Summary & Analysis

Louis Menand
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Part 3, Chapter 9 The Metaphysical Club, Section 2 Summary

One of the main players in the Metaphysical Club was Chauncey Wright. He was considered a type of "local Socrates." He remained unmarried his entire life. His only published works were book reviews, but he was known for the way he could retain information.

Wright had a full time job with the American Ephemeris and Nautical Almanac. He completed the work in three months and talked to people the remaining nine months.

Wright considered himself a positivist. He believed positivism was the difference between facts, that were part of science, and values, that were part of metaphysics. He did not believe that metaphysical thought should be attached to science in any way. It was different from science. However, he did not believe in religion either. He viewed religion as a hindrance to the freedom of thought.

Wright...

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