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Eric Schliesser
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The approach suggested here is intellectually more modest and realistic, without sacrificing generality. It does not regard uncertainty as an aberrational exogenous disturbance, as does the usual approach from the opposite extreme of accurate foresight. The existence of uncertainty and incomplete information is the foundation of the suggested type of... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Digressions&Impressions
Neil, yes, blogging allows for a kind of non-professionalism/non-specialization with all the pitfalls that entails. But it's also a way to get potentially interesting stuff out there without writing for referees.
Toggle Commented 3 days ago on Defending the Asses at Digressions&Impressions
Yes, Dan, I am kind of expecting to spend the next few years reading and re-reading a lot of old critical theory and sociology of knowledge and political economy (including Bell). So much to look forward to!
By a 'technocratic conception of politics,' (recall) I mean to capture the following three features of an enduring image of politics present in (social) science: first, it is characterized by the ideal that with social knowledge and its progress, substantial political disagreement can be eliminated. Here is a very striking... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
PEA Soup was founded as a place where people would try out new ideas, posting about an idea for a paper and not a completed, fully armored, paper. We don’t want to discourage discussion of completed work. Indeed, we have partnered with many great journals, whose recently published papers are... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
Rawls himself said in the opening pages of “A Theory of Justice” that we had to start with ideal theory because it was necessary for properly doing the really important thing: non-ideal theory, including the “pressing and urgent matter” of remedying injustice. But what was originally supposed to have been... Continue reading
Posted 5 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
Yes, as I noted in the post (in commenting on the fate of X-PHI)--folk can be hired in one area of specialization while also easily fitting in a differently labeled area of specialization. But if folk working in Y systematically have to be hired 'under cover' of something else (X), then the long-term fate of Y will come under systematic pressure.
Keith, the survey is lengthy, but given the stakes involved I don't see why adding, say, an hour's work is an undue burden. Given the level of existing enmity I doubt much can be added to it (perhaps I am naive?) whereas some experiments with modest reform and inclusivity in the evaluation and evaluated pool might lead to a healthier conversation. Anyway, I encourage trial and experimentation!
Not long after I published this post, I was invited to participate in the PGR survey (funny how that goes). Despite the incisive, ongoing criticism, especially by Mitchell Aboulafia, Jessica Wilson, and John Protevi, I signed up as an evaluator in two of my areas of specialization (early modern and... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
Marcus Arvan over at Philosopherscocoon tallied the distribution of Areas of Specializations (AOS) of this year's paltry number of tenure track listings; on Nov 14, there were no more than 110 according to Zombie. It gives a good snapshot of hiring trends. (It would be nice if somebody could find... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at Digressions&Impressions
A hero–as we use the term in typical English discourse–is someone who voluntarily engages in rightful service to others, even though that service puts him at risk of harm, and who does so out of benevolence rather than a desire for personal gain. So, to assess whether soldiers are heroes,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 14, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
[This is a guest-post by Lisa Herzog.--ES] I am a philosopher, and last year I went on a research trip to Ecuador and Columbia. Yes, you haven’t misread, and this is not The Onion. Let me explain how this came about, and why a philosophers can engage with social scientific... Continue reading
Posted Nov 13, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
On a beautiful Fall day, I got a ride through the Indiana countryside from Zvi Biener. We stopped for gas in a small town, and we spotted a 1967 Chevelle. I asked the owner if I could take pictures. (Permission was granted.) He told me that his first car had... Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
Dear Anna, My post is not a criticism of the PSA or its very fine program committee! (My only complaint is that the session you mention was programmed at the same time as one of the Newton sessions!) But even that session -- and the PSA is a HUGE conference -- does not engage with some of the historically neglected social sciences. Anyway, the point of the post is to get a conversation started about the sources of neglect--not to fingerpoint at any group.
I had a great time at the most recent PSA in Chicago. I spent one day focused on papers on Isaac Newton; another day on decision theory; and the remainder of my time attending papers on science and values. Because I attended a whole bunch of sessions on decision theory,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
We are thankful to those who have spent a significant amount of their time and energy making philosophy a more inclusive space, as well as to those who are working to support victims. However, we recognize that if the progress they have made is not to be lost, rights to... Continue reading
Posted Nov 10, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
One by-product of the publishing arm's race (recall this post and the discussion at Dailynous) that the role of graduate educators (supervisors and others) is increasingly geared toward making sure that their students publish during their doctorates. This has been facilitated by the ongoing trend toward the 'PhD as a... Continue reading
Posted Nov 8, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
Koen Vermeir has a nice paper,(2013). "Philosophy and Genealogy: Ways of Writing History of Philosophy." in Philosophy and Its History: Aims and Methods in the Study of Early Modern Philosophy, Oxford OUP, 50ff.
The Directory of American Philosophers listed some 11,000 academic philosophers in the United States and Canada for 1975, and roughly 13,000 for 2005. It appears that the profession grew by somewhat under 20 percent during this thirty-year, generation-sized period. On the other hand, the membership of the American Philosophical Association... Continue reading
Posted Nov 6, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
"Who is that crazy old man?" I asked. Nodding at a short fellow slowly leaving the seminar room. "He just gave you a huge compliment." I was still a PhD student, and I had just given a paper on Adam Smith and Rousseau at the Summer Institute.* I had been... Continue reading
Posted Nov 5, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
Despair's a maudlin ecstasy of baroque romanticism. You wait for signs.-Chris Kraus (2000) Aliens & Anorexia (46) [A]ll these readings deny the possibility of a psychic, intellectual equation between a culture's food and the entire social order. Anorexia is a malady experienced by girls, and it's still impossible to imagine... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
Because my beloved is on lecture-tour in South Africa, I sing a different set of lullabies than we would do if she were around to my almost-five-year-old-son before he goes to sleep. I let him choose and he nearly always wants my version of Doris Day's Que sera sera. I... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions
Thank you for this very interesting post, Gordon.
It's certainly possible that because PGR is flawed (and Schwitzgebel and I are both fairly clear about what we take these to be) it may be viewed with suspicion by outsiders in an institutional context. But ALL the metrics I am familiar with are flawed and have perverse effects, so it's not obvious that PGR (which certainly can be improved w/o losing its existing essential characteristics) is really all that much worse than ANY other metrics. Of course, if the Meme you endorse gathers steam in institutional contexts, then that would spell the end of PGR fairly quickly.
In his youth, Berlin's intellectual development followed that of English-language philosophy, and he was at one point deeply involved in the advance of analytic philosophy; yet he drifted away from this, and his later writings and concerns are a world away from most Anglo-American philosophy of their time. Joshua Cherniss... Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2014 at Digressions&Impressions