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Charles Wolfe
chercheur en histoire et philosophie des sciences de la vie
Recent Activity
Yes, great.
Thanks. That's funny: (i) I translated that book on Kant (and have not had much contact with her since), (ii) I was invited last year to a conference entitled 'Lucrezio e la modernita' in Milano (some of which dealt with a Lucretius-Spinoza axis, although from a more Althusserian than Deleuzian angle). Duly noted.
Thanks, Chris and Greg (if one clicks on the Authors link at top of page on blog you usually get a link to a staff page of ours w. an email address; that said, Greg, I'll email you). I read a fair bit of 'early Ricoeur' (I mean things like La symbolique du mal, Le conflit des interprétations and essays like 'Marx, Nietzsche, Freud') when an undergraduate, but never the Freud book ...
that's very cool, Jon. I like him in films and he seems like he'd be a very pleasant, reasonably funny guy in real life. But ... re. the Undertaker, why a stuffed cocker spaniel? Just on the principle of 'his brother has a cocker spaniel so I will give him a stuffed cocker spaniel'? It's not that weird, but seems unusual (unless the people involved were already friends). Right?
thanks Jeff. That could be useful for a student trying to figure out some of the 'enjeux' of the discussion. I remember being quite underwhelmed or disappointed by that book: the philosophical part (esp. on Nietzsche et al.) struck me as very weak; and the historical part impressed me at the time (but I met some prominent historians of the period, and that sort of material, who said the same thing about that part). That said, "caute !", since the author displayed full-on litigious behavior towards a reviewer of the book once ...
Does anyone know of interesting work on the conatus and Freud ? I remember reading a bit about this sort of thing in Stuart Hampshire's book, and there's a fair bit of (often unnecessary) writing in France on Lacan and Spinoza, but I am looking for helpful, conceptually oriented essays... Continue reading
Locke on free will, Eric? No one comes close (unless one is only looking for libertarian arguments). Locke on essence ? Locke on truth as propositional ? Locke on God in Book IV of the Essay and in Reasonablesness? Locke on a kind of maker's knowledge? And of course, on innate ideas? If anything the tolerance stuff can be replaced with Spinoza at less cost. But why all this talk of dropping people? The more we find interesting people to talk about (eg Toland or Collins) the more we can profitably juxtapose them with something traditional. Descartes alongside Locke or La Mettrie makes for a fun Descartes without having to demean oneself with the Matrix or something. No?
Jeff, this is really interesting and detailed. Note that in American Spinoza scholarship (or 'analytically' oriented Spinoza scholarship), Michael Della Rocca heavily pushes a reading of Spinoza featuring the PSR, which I always found a bit odd since for a naturalist, how can there be a PSR? And I would have applied this to Deleuze too ("l'herbe, ça pousse par le milieu..."). But you make a different, and well-supported point!
I don't think anyone outside the Varelian crew (and granted there are enormous philosophical differences in that volume between, picked at random, Barbaras, Roy and Petitot) takes the naturalizing phenomenology project seriously, or else in a very matter of fact way; 'they have useful insights' but then it makes no difference to the philosophical core or positioning of whoever is discussing it. (That said to Jon.) And indeed it won't work with any naturalistic program however oecumenical (agreeing with Eric S). But taking on Dennett is a little facile / old by now, isn't it? After all there is not just Churchland and Dennett out there: there's an impressive paper by Ralph Ellis and John Bickle (Yes, THAT Bickle! the ruthless reductionist) on some aspects of phenomenology which is much less crude than what is described above. And after all, Menary, Sutton et al have left behind those analytic vs phenomenological debates ages ago... dunno what Catarina thinks about it. To say: the phenomenological tradition is deeper and richer than what Dennett makes of it... so? The cognitivist tradition is also deeper and richer than what Heidegger would have thought (or Charles Taylor). There is also the Jaakko Hintikka take on Husserl in an analytic vein. Etc....
Ah, those European names, so complicated! It's van Benthem, like van Beethoven, not von. "It's time for them to say so in public": is there a new sheriff in town? I do find it unfortunate that van Benthem and Hendricks have been rather silent, letting their American colleague soak up the majority of the insults and the attacks. But what is this business about Europeans and Americans? Shall we go through the boycott list and see who is who? What about the Europeans who are professors in the United States? Maybe they are already contaminated by ideological conditioning they received early on (when? in high school?). And is it the case - please tell us now! right away! - that if we disagree with the boycott we are the objective allies of the ID lobby in the United States?
Oh, it was a joke, when you told all of us that we must be working with 'European facts' because we disliked the Lord of the Flies type bullying, or the facile moralism, or the appeal to insider information, or the hyper-personalized summons to 'do this now or else'? I guess we need a training session in humor to be up to speed. As much I don't find much lovely in either the disclaimer, the Synthese issue, Beckwith et al, I am surprised to see this appeal to 'it was a joke'! Was the 'I get to be the moral arbiter of my blog' also a joke? I've received a few emails from non-European (yes, NON-EUROPEAN) professors of philosophy thanking me for my tone and/or position, but then again, don't we all invoke secret emails here? Jeez Louise.
BHL is an extraordinary source of foulness in different areas (I remember first of all his praise for the noble Algerian army in the 90s as the force of Enlightenment in that irrational country, written in Le Monde as a series of reports from 'the front'; his film-embarassment 'Bosna' where he was exposed later as having posed in "dangerous situations" to be photographed behind sandbags etc., which were in fact staged pictures; philosophically, his attempt to reassert 'humanism' over and against the dangerous relativism of the '68 generation of thinkers). I am mildly surprised - but one should stop being so with him, always - that he has chosen this stupid line on this pathetic (horrid for the victim) story.
whoops! how funny - i replied to a comment above (discussion betwenn Jon, Mark and others) with this reference. But John Sutton does have a paper on Memento, too.
On memory and the extended mind, see the nice work of John Sutton and collaborators at Macquarie. His contribution to the long-time-in-coming-out volume The Extended Mind, edited by Richard Menary, may bear on this, I can't remember (no joke intended; but as I write this I have this feeling his essay may be on extended mind and ... 'Memento' !).
That's lovely Dennis. I remember trying to explain to an earnest bulldog Davidsonian (married to a distinguished swedophone Finnish Descartes scholar...) that in no way could early modern materialists, at least the ones i was interested in, be 'physicalists', as there was no physics to serve as a 'reducing theory'. That said, I suppose Hobbes and d'Holbach are counter-examples (but Hartley is not).
Charles Wolfe is now following Lorraine Millot
May 15, 2011
Can we clone you, Jon? Maybe not 1000 times, but a bunch of times? Thanks for saying these things. It seems so bloody reasonable !
Thanks Jon, this ("I just could not sign this petition" above; for some reason i can't reply there) makes a lot of sense.
It's a shame that because it comes at the end of a long discussion and we have already created a few other pages and posts on the topic, Ph. Huneman's comment didn't get noticed much: I am happy to agree that the disclaimer letter is not a great, great thing... Continue reading
not at the IHPST in Paris, possibly the most active seminar in PhiloBio on the Continent, which conducts many of its activities in English! (i had a semi-colon slip into the URL).
Re gender issues, indeed; and I am not unsympathetic to the idea of some kind of boycott of offenders raised earlier. But, taking off from Catarina's observation, I was commenting on the idea of an individual being a moral arbiter for a profession. (Yes, I can start a blog and be its moral arbiter.) But in the end, Plantinga theology aside, I'd really like to see what the editors say rather than be clever in advance.
It's here [PDF]. Some of us knew the empiricists were right all along. Did Bach-y-Rita help with that? I can't remember but his last name stuck in my mind... Did the rewired ferrets - a memory from way back in 2000? Oh, I know there are plenty of fans of... Continue reading
Fantastic! My first week in Pittsburgh (last November), still dealing with the fact that famous scholars/philosophers in my dept were also Randians, I went to pick up a book on hold at the library (Hillman Library) and at the desk was a friendly, midly alternative young woman (18-20 yrs old) fighting, yes FIGHTING (ok, play-fighting but in earnest) with her colleague at the desk over a copy of ... you guessed it, The Fountainhead. I stared at her in shock and said 'you really like that?'; she smiled and said Yes. I added, with some kind of irony in my tone, 'you're really into that, you"re comfortable with that idea?' and she smiled Yes and went back to fighting with her colleague.