Month: March 2017

  • Shostakovich and the Stories We Tell Ourselves About Ourselves

    by Margaret Rowley Ethnographers tend to like stories, as do many non-ethnographers. Much of the point of ethnography is simultaneously to hear people tell their stories (interview) and watch them live their stories (observation), and then try to critically analyze what’s happening (theoretical intervention). At least one ethnographer, Clifford Geertz, has suggested that the definition […]

  • New York Diary Part III

    You can read The New York Diary part I here and part II here Being the experiences and adventures of a young, single, appallingly poor, surprisingly clean, twenty-something magazine proprietor and philosopher in Gotham. By Daniel Tippens  July 2014 After graduating from NYU, I began working in a cancer research lab. Those in the know […]

  • Lost World

    by Mark English My old high-school Latin teacher had a very short temper. He exploded on a regular basis. More than once he became so agitated in class that he knocked off his own spectacles, sending them skidding across the floor. Corporal punishment was part of the culture at this strange institution, which seemed to […]

  • Some Problems with Incompatibalism

    by E. John Winner Social determinism and compatibilism I gave up worrying about the “free will vs. determinism” debate back around 1990.  At that time, I was studying Pragmatism, especially (in the present context) that of Dewey [1], George Herbert Mead [2], and the little known but nonetheless important Explanation and Power: The Control of […]

  • Course Notes – H.A. Prichard, “Does Moral Philosophy Rest on a Mistake?”

    by Daniel A. Kaufman We have finished with our survey of traditional ethical theories, in my Theories of Ethics course, and the students have been given a whopper of an exam on Aristotle, Hume, Kant, and Mill.  I don’t envy them.  (Though neither do I envy myself, as I will be spending a good […]

  • Why The Free Will Problem Isn’t One

    by Daniel A. Kaufman First of all, the “Free Will Problem” is a stupid  name.  I mean, do I have to think there is such a thing as a “will” in order to believe in Free Will?  Or “freedom,” beyond that of being able to go to the mall, if I want to or not, […]

  • Is the Free Will Debate a Verbal Dispute?

    By Paul So I’ve noticed that academic philosophers, being fairly insulated from the wider public, have largely failed to engage educated laymen who are interested, and perplexed, about free will. In particular, most people think that there are really only two plausible positions — if determinism is true then there is no free will, and […]

  • Politics and Song

    by E. John Winner Now, the whole business of Irish nationalism can get very serious if you’re not careful. – Liam Clancy [1] My father, Joseph Connelly, abandoned his family when I was two years of age.  I probably should have hated him and be done with it; but that’s not how children respond to […]