Category: Essays

  • A Pragmatic Option

    by Jay Jeffers ____ American Pragmatism has been controversial from the start. It was accused of “cosmic impiety” by Bertrand Russell, a founding father of Anglophone analytic philosophy. Rifts developed quickly even within the young school of thought, with the original pragmatist Charles Sanders Peirce renaming his approach “pragmaticism,” which he thought was “ugly enough…

  • Mediocrity

    by Robert Gressis ____ The following is a research proposal that I’m going to submit for various year-long fellowships. Generally, these fellowships request that you explain what you’re up to in about 1,000 words. I offer it to the EA community for your reactions and advice. Even though it’s already at its limit, any ways…

  • Angry People

    By Daniel A. Kaufman ___ Not too long ago, my wife and daughter headed to our regional airport to catch a flight to NY to visit my elderly mother, who readers may remember is recently widowed. Because our small city is off of the major routes, flights have to transfer at a hub, in this…

  • Caring

    By Kevin Currie-Knight ___ Political and cultural polarization is on the rise. And it’s not just that we increasingly see things differently, but that we’re more hostile to views that differ from ours, often seeing them as threats rather than mere differences. Social media – and this likely bleeds into other online and real-life spaces…

  • The Philosophers Behind the Texts

    by Bharath Vallabha ____ For sixteen years I studied and taught philosophy. As a professor I taught Plato, Descartes, Kant, Wittgenstein and Heidegger. I thought I knew Western philosophy. Boy, was I wrong. Though I taught the great texts, in an important sense I didn’t understand them or the thinkers who wrote them. For —…

  • Doctor Wankenstein Goes to Japan

    by Miroslav Imbrišević ____ A PhD student of Japanese Studies at Manchester University (UK) recently published a paper in Qualitative Research, which has been condemned in the media and is now being investigated by the university and by the journal. Two things have caused offence: the research method (masturbation); and the material used during masturbation…

  • Sharing

    By Kevin Currie-Knight ___ What follows is the first part of three essays on the trends of increasing political and cultural polarization as well as our diminishing willingness to tolerate opposing ideas. In a sense, these are an outgrowth of previous thoughts I’ve had about toleration and its conditions. What is toleration? What does it…

  • Truth Rediscovered: A Humanistic View of Rationality

    By Jay Jeffers ___ The Buddha said, “Three things cannot long be hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.” Or maybe he didn’t. Scholars would have to chime in on the popular interpretation through the lens of history, linguistics, and the like. Either way it’s a vivid quote. The real problem isn’t whether or…

  • Some Thoughts on Spoilers

    by Milton Lawson ____ I recently saw a tweet in favor of spoilers that said the following: I’m extremely pro-spoilers, personally. If my enjoyment of a thing hinges on a twist, I generally doubt I’ll like it much afterward. If I know what’s coming but getting there is the best part, that’s the good stuff.…

  • Remarks on Religion

    By Daniel A. Kaufman ____ By now, most readers know that I am an atheist, as I do not believe in the existence of God or anything supernatural. Readers also likely know that I am Jewish by lineage and culturally and that I think God is useless both as an explanation and as a moral…