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John Protevi
Baton Rouge LA
I'm a philosopher, though I work in a French department.
Recent Activity
Ferguson on Pinker's use of archaeology:'s%20List%20-%20Exaggerating%20Prehistoric%20War%20Mortality%20(2013).pdf Note the distinction between war and muder in the above. Chagnon is discussed here in several essays:;jsessionid=7CD7928615A87C6B458640CA2C8314D8?cc=nl&lang=en&
Very interesting, Gordon. A few data points to the stratification and dynamic pricing model. I think some of the on-hold delays will slip in some ads -- reminders of products they offer and so on -- along with the muzak, though I imagine corporations will want to be careful here as they are associating their company with delays. Also, with frequent flyer medallion status comes a separate phone number with (mostly) shorter delays. Although snow storms and the like will clog up even the elite phone lines. Then again, maybe there are even divisions here, so that -- using the Delta terminology -- mere Silver and Gold Medallions will have one number, Platinums another, and Diamonds still a third. Sticking with airlines, here's an allied notion: you can join their lounges, but there you're not really paying for speed, you're paying for reduced noise. Though I guess there is some time savings via reduced transaction costs for the coffee and snacks.
The review, in BioScience, is available here. I highly recommend it for its cool, judicious treatment, as well as for the glimpse into Evan's own approach, near the end of the review: Nagel neglects another important body of work closely connected to ­theoretical and experimental models of the origins of... Continue reading
We got the following request at comment 102 on the other thread. It seems worthwhile, so we're opening this for narrowly focused discussion of the substantive -- as opposed to illustrative -- points of the "Please do NOT revise your tone" post: As someone who might have something to say... Continue reading
I theorized and defended my use of snark here, but I hereby renounce its use. Although I do not think it "apt" to describe New APPS as instantiating a "self-righteous lynch-mob mentality"* (if indeed that phrase was meant to encompass us among its targets), I will nonetheless refrain from further... Continue reading
Jonathan, as I read the story it's a state, not university, "revenue shortfall" that's at issue, as said shortfall is resulting in across-the-board cuts to state agencies, $10 million of which is targeting the University of Maine system. The general point about university debt is well taken, as Ed Kazarian notes.
The story is here. I think there are two things to note here: 1: the threat to jobs of our colleagues: "The head of the University of Maine System said Friday that further state budget cuts could force the system to shed 95 jobs, on top of its plan to... Continue reading
I second this. I also await Brian Leiter's promised reply, which I hope, in addition to an apology to McKinnon, will explain that he did not mean to imply that criticism of his use of "vigilante justice" to describe the non-violent protest of Northwestern students constitutes "a lynch mob." Continue reading
In comments here at Schliesser's blog. Follow up comments should be directed there. Continue reading
NBC Chicago article here: Northwestern University professor Peter Ludlow, the target of a sexual harassment complaint by a female student, filed a response to that woman’s lawsuit in Cook County Court on Friday, denying her allegations and stating that she was the real aggressor. Daily Northwestern article here: Philosophy Prof.... Continue reading
I'm sorry to hear of this. My condolences to all in the Toronto, and wider, philosophy community.
The graduate students of the Department of Philosophy at Northwestern University, have by a majority vote, adopted the following statement: We find the alleged behavior of gross professional misconduct recently leveled against a faculty member in our department to be deplorable. Further, we judge that the university has failed our... Continue reading
Friend of the blog and brilliant neurofeminist researcher Rebecca Jordan-Young asks people to visit this petition site in support of her distinguished colleagues Carol Vance and Kim Hopper. That bell tolling you hear, where if you don't bring in 80% of your salary in grants, you're fired even after 25+... Continue reading
A terrible loss felt by many, many people. Notice is here, from Fordham University Press, where she was Editorial Director. Continue reading
Hi Mark, I accept both your points as friendly amendments. The second, in particular, has some resonance with my own history.
Discussion on FB of this post at Leiter Reports about rejection led me to remark: I hesitate to say this, since I made it through the wars by dint of being married to the right person, but here goes. My wife likes to say "you can't take rejection personally; there... Continue reading
Yes, but the "longer history" to which you refer is nothing other than a longer "matter of convenience, legitimated by both the powers that be and the opposition within a certain social-historical situation." In other words, instead of tortoises, it's always "a certain social-historical situation," all the way down. The point is to analyze the conjunctures that lead to the ups and downs of humanities study and to see what we can do about the current situation. I appreciate your puncturing of grandiloquent posturing about "changing the world," but the warning about babies and bathwater applies here too.
Article here. This suit is in state court. The previous suit was in federal court, against Northwestern, under Title IX. A Northwestern University student who sued the University earlier this month, accusing them of failing to adequately follow up on her allegations of sexual harassment against a professor, is now... Continue reading
I think that makes sense. We would need good data, but my impression is that humanities programs are under-enrolled and then closed at regional public schools as "luxuries" in a way that they aren't at rich private schools. For instance, the French major was closed at Southeastern Louisiana whereas it will be a long time before it's seriously threatened at Tulane. This fits the above idea of everything as production: instead of humanities as consumption (i.e., intrinsically rewarding) they are seen as production of status for rich folks (status being one of part of the utility function for them). In other words, to switch terms, going back to Veblen's conspicuous consumption. This might need to be cleaned up terminologically, but I hope you see what I'm after.
It may be that the humanities are sensitive to recessions more than other disciplines. I don't have the stats at hand now, but my takeaway from last week's discussion is that in the US humanities have been overall quite stable since the early 1980s (after halting the decline from the high water mark of 1967) but they dipped in 1990-91 and again now since 2009 or so.
This article in Dissent is a good call for action, focusing on the University of Illinois-Chicago strike last week. However, one additional factor needs to be put into the equation: undergraduate student-workers, who do lots and lots of service and clerical work: checking books out of the library, answering phones... Continue reading
Article in the Daily Northwestern is here. The student’s attorney, Kevin O’Connor, told The Daily on Friday afternoon the University had provided him additional information regarding the committee, which the original lawsuit says was established to determine disciplinary actions against Ludlow. O’Connor said he recently learned the committee was created... Continue reading
The link works for me. Here is the URL:
About relative numbers, one could argue that the current numbers are a sharp decline from the historical high of the mid-60s, but much less of a decline from the immediate post-WWII era. As a percentage of all degrees, the core humanities remained in the 10–11% range from 1948 until the late 1950s, when the humanities share began to increase steadily, cresting at 17.2% in 1967. Along with the drop in absolute numbers of humanities bachelor’s degrees that occurred over the course of the 1970s and early 1980s, the humanities experienced a substantial decline in their share of all bachelor’s degrees. Although the number of humanities degree completions increased thereafter, so did the total number of bachelor’s degrees awarded. Consequently, the humanities’ share of all bachelor’s degrees remains well below the 1970s high. When core degrees are counted, the humanities’ share of all bachelor’s degrees conferred in 2011, 6.9%, was less than half the 1967 high. When CIP categories are used for tabulation purposes, humanities degrees represented 11.1% of all bachelor’s degrees awarded in 2011. By either measure, the share of all degrees that were earned in the humanities declined approximately 7% from 2009 to 2011.