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Eric Schliesser
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Yesterday, after I unpacked the book boxes in my new office, I suddenly remembered a colleague’s comment from my Syracuse years: “Between the two of you, you and Tamar Gendler know everybody in the whole discipline,” (or something to that effect). I was unsure it was meant as a compliment... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
But "Africans are philosophers. From the moment they were abducted they argued philosophically that it was unjust," Coleman says. But they weren't listened to, and even today they are missing from the canon of Eurocentric curricula and are not valued as philosophers. Enlightenment philosophers such as Hobbes or Rousseau philosophised... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
Yesterday, I learned from his former colleague, June Flanders, that the Stanford economist, Nathan Rosenberg, has died. At his passing he was the Fairleigh S. Dickinson, Jr. Professor Emeritus of Public Policy in the Department of Economics. He was an expert in the economics of technology, especially technological change and... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
A central part of Omri Boehm's book, Kant's Critique of Spinoza (especially Chapters 2&3) is a re-reading of Kant's antinomies in order to show that these address Spinoza and Spinozism in order to help explain the Critical Kant's claim that the two viable metaphysical options are either Kant's Transendental Idealism,... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
And Saul said: 'Thus shall ye say to David: The king desireth not any dowry, but a hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king's enemies.' For Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines. 1 Samuel 18:25 This week-end I saw a... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
[T]he acknowledgment of uncertainty and unknowability does not lead to a political-philosophical recognition of the fragility of modern life. On the contrary, this uncertainty itself becomes a ground for security action and intervention on the basis of speculation and imagination. As Francois Ewald put it...The precautionary principle invites one to... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
The thesis that luxury had destroyed ancient European civilization actually originated from the ancients themselves, who were capable of formulating the best theoretical accounts of their own demise. This was not an explanation after the event, it was a prediction that had come out true. Whatever the problem with ancient... Continue reading
Posted Aug 21, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
The same Cicero, who affected, in his own family, to appear a devout religionist, makes no scruple, in a public court of judicature, of treating the doctrine of a future state as a ridiculous fable, to which no body could give any attention. Sallust represents Caesar as speaking the same... Continue reading
Posted Aug 20, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
Della Rocca’s only valid case in point is the question “in virtue of what is ‘causa sui’ conceived as existing?” and, to that question, he can answer (if he can) by denying the validity of the question: causa sui, he will say, “is conceived to exist because it is what... Continue reading
Posted Aug 19, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
In this video I bring together some themes I have blogged about over the years. Continue reading
Posted Aug 19, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
Kathryn, thank you for your kind words. I agree that there are multiple (not always overlapping) status economies within the profession and I agree that I failed to make that clear; and I also with you that there is no reason for despair about the state of philosophy in the wider culture. So, yes, this is no time for despair!
I agree with your inference on the sentence you quote, G-FA! (The key word is 'govern.') I am inclined to think that given human nature, we need more incentives for mutual aid and other virtues. (I agree with you that such incentives also exist.) In using 'moral community' I was exploiting polysemy (with apologies to my analytical friends), and I intended it also to include the sense you are thinking of (as some of the echoes to Seneca in my post suggest).
Congrats!
Toggle Commented Aug 18, 2015 on Two small milestones at The Philosophers' Cocoon
The moment to propose an open marriage was before the wedding, not thirty-five years later.--I. McEwan, The Children Act, 6. This court is a court of law, not of morals, and our task has been to find, and our duty is then to apply, the relevant principles of law to... Continue reading
Posted Aug 18, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
If you have to ask the question (Is (Professional) Philosophy a Moral Community?), you know the answer. But for the obtuse: professional philosophy is not a moral community. I find most attempts of my successful peers to justify morally one's participation in many of the perks of this community comic.+... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
After 260 consecutive posts since the last summer break, I pause to take a two week family holiday. These posts average about 800 viewings (although the variance is pretty significant), which continues to creep up. I continue to be honored by your regular interest, dear reader, in my expanding, unsystematic... Continue reading
Posted Jul 31, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
The Dutch saw, with the utmost regret, a war approaching, whence they might dread the most fatal consequences, but which afforded no prospect of advantage. They tried every art of negotiation, before they would come to extremities. Their measures were at that time directed by John de Wit, a minister... Continue reading
Posted Jul 30, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
Brian Epstein’s The Ant Trap: Rebuilding the Foundations of the Social Sciences is a wonderful contribution to metaphysics, social ontology, and philosophy of social science (and relevant for all the human sciences). I rarely find myself agreeing with Christian List, but I agree with his claim (blurbed on the back... Continue reading
Posted Jul 29, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
Sir William Temple, his resident at Brussels, received orders to go secretly to the Hague, and to concert with the States the means of saving the Netherlands. This man, whom philosophy had taught to despise the world, without rendering him unfit for it, was frank, open, sincere, superior to the... Continue reading
Posted Jul 28, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
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Reports of the death of the analytic/continental divide are highly premature, and the rampant claims that this division is "merely sociological" seem to imply (in rather un-Latourian fashion) that sociology deals only with figments of the imagination.--Harman on Latour, p. 11. During my last visit to the pre-renovation-era Stedelijk, I... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
Where the deity is represented as infinitely superior to mankind, this belief, though altogether just, is apt, when joined with superstitious terrors, to sink the human mind into the lowest submission and abasement, and to represent the monkish virtues of mortification, penance, humility, and passive suffering, as the only qualities... Continue reading
Posted Jul 24, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
This week I am at the 42nd Annual Hume Society Conference in Stockholm, Sweden. Out of those forty-two, I have attended nine since 2004. I started attending when I was fresh out of graduate school. I have a vivid memory of an occasion during the first one I attended in... Continue reading
Posted Jul 23, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
Yes, Roy (if I may?), thank you; that's a very important reference for Smith. I explore some of the connections between D'Alembert's Discourse and Smith's philosophy of science in some articles I published a decade ago.)
The 1978 World Cup involve my earliest televised football memories. (I was seven years old.) My favorite player in the tournament was Daniel Passarella (because of his exotic name). The Dutch side was not expected to do well because its best player, Johan Cruyff, withdrew from the squad. (I had... Continue reading
Posted Jul 21, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions
This is the Hinge of your system.--David Hume on The Theory of Moral Sentiments to Adam Smith, 28 July 1759 In his forthcoming intellectual biography of David Hume, James Harris points out that after the youthful Treatise, Hume does not self-describe his own writing(s) as 'systematic' or a 'system' in... Continue reading
Posted Jul 21, 2015 at Digressions&Impressions