The intellectual centre of pragmatism is shifting out of North America. Instead, vibrant research networks are emerging in South America, Scandinavia, central Europe, and China. This is an important shift. It means that the field of pragmatism is moving away from a dominant European tradition. And it means that pragmatism will continue to evolve and grow.
Pragmatic marketing focuses on matching a product to the needs of the customer and market. This means creating a product that meets the needs of customers and prospects, and then testing and refining it even after it has launched. This philosophy also encourages continuous improvements to the product to sustain its lifecycle.
Pragmatic actions also offer a different perspective on emotions. Unlike traditional emotion theories, which largely view emotions as mind-to-world directed evaluative representations, pragmatic actions focus on emotions as social-contextual goal states. This allows us to account for short-term and long-term emotions in a way that is more accurate and concise.
While we can’t always determine the purpose of a given emotion, we can use it to communicate our purpose or affect an important outcome. For example, the social function of anger is to change another person’s behavior. However, this emotion can also be used without causing offense. For example, a parent might use anger to discipline a child who is demonstrating dangerous behavior, while a football player might display it to intimidate a rival teammate.
Pragmatic actions are social transformations that advance the goal state. In social contexts, construing emotions as pragmatic actions helps us understand their intentionality and their role in the context. It is an excellent way to view emotions and social contexts in a more accurate way. So, while emotions are natural human responses, the pragmatic approach can help us understand their role in a different light.
Emotions are complex cognitive processes that occur in varying temporal scales. Emotion qua pragmatic action may be directed at an immediate goal in a relationship or it may be a long-term goal. The process may involve repeated interactions with the environment. In either case, the action is aimed at a goal that is measurable in the future, such as a relationship.
Besides being epistemic, emotional expressions do not express genuine emotions. In fact, they may not be genuine at all. The action may be purely pragmatic while the emotion is not genuine. This is why the emotional content of an emotion should be considered an important feature. The evaluative content of an emotion determines its defining features.