Since it is inevitable that cheesy colleagues and well-meaning friends will be regularly bringing these to all future parties and dinners, let’s hope that they are good. Feel free to post your tasting notes.
Speaking of video games, Starcraft 2 is a “military science fiction real-time video game” that is used in at least one classroom to teach “critical thinking, problem solving, resource management, and adaptive decision making.” It also has been used by researchers at Simon Fraser University to demonstrate that “measurable declines in cognitive performance begin to oc..
Massimo Pigliucci, currently professor at CUNY and soon to be holder of the K.D. Irani Professorship in Philosophy there, takes the occasion of his 50th birthday to reflect on his first five years as a professor of philosophy (following 26 years as a biologist) and on the discipline as a whole, particularly the relationship between philosophy and science.
A new study on contingent or adjunct faculty has been released. The New York Times comments on it, and then itself comes in for some criticism for being a little late with the news: “The issue isn’t that they’re ‘treated almost like transient workers’ but that they’reactually transient workers. “
“I… think that donor conception is irresponsible. I sometimes compare it to ‘deadbeat dads’: men who abandon their wives and children and don’t provide for them. I think a sperm donor is a kind of deadbeat dad who creates children and then doesn’t care for them.”
The 2014 Fellows of the American Council of Learned Societies have been announced, and the winners include five people working in philosophy: Michael Brownstein (New Jersey Institute of Technology), Alyssa DeBlasio (Dickinson College), Richard Moran (Harvard), William Newman (Indiana), and Anat Schechtman (Chicago). The fellowships include 6-12 months of salary repl..
For the past few years philosopher Sean Kelly (Harvard) has been on a quest to locate the missing “death mask” of Blaise Pascal. You didn’t even know it existed, let alone that it was missing, did you? The news story does not say that Kelly will be making use of the death mask in a bizarre cult ceremony in a secret temple located beneath Emerson Hall. But it doesn’t..
“The poverty of graduate school is often joked about. How many professors reminisce fondly about just scraping by in grad school? How many people joke about the number of people they fit in their hotel room at the conference or how many times they had to eat ramen?” For some students from poorer families, though, the poverty of graduate school is no laughing matter…
I started Daily Nous on March 7 — one month ago today. I would like to thank my friends and colleagues in the profession for their encouragement of this project. I am also very appreciative of those of you who have sent in news items for me to post. Please keep doing so! Occasionally I have had posts that ask for your opinions and input; I am grateful to those who ..
The other day, a graduate student in philosophy posted her account of an affair she has had with an older, prominent philosopher who works in her area (but was not a professor at her institution). She also claimed that the philosopher, who has a long-term partner, has had more than one such relation, particularly with younger women philosophers who admire him. She a..
1. Wittgenstein and cricket.
2. The ethics of fashion.
3. A book of 33 interviews on the relation between science and religion
4. The philosophy of walking.
5. Dennett’s advice for criticizing with kindness.
6. Vox on Ziker (previously) on how professors spend their time.
7. A philosopher has written a memoir about surviving rape.
8. Venn diagram organizes the varieties of “irrational nonsense.”
9. “You have to make philosophy exciting…. What better way to do it than turn Plato’s ideas into a gripping time travel adventure story!” What better way, people?
A survey based on 115 forums held around the United States brought some seemingly good news about what the public thinks of philosophical education in college:
Nearly 9 in 10 of those returning questionnaires strongly or somewhat agreed that college should be “where students learn to develop the ability to think critically by studying a rich curriculum that includes..
Andrew Chignell (Cornell) and Samuel Newlands (Notre Dame) are the recipients of a $4.5 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation for their project, “Hope and Optimism: Conceptual and Empirical Investigations.”
What will they do with these funds?
The three-year interdisciplinary effort will explore the theoretical, empirical and practical dimensions of hope..
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences has elected its 2014 class and it includes five philosophers: John Broome (Oxford), Arthur Fine (University of Washington), Ruth Millikan (University of Connecticut), David Velleman (NYU), and Gary Watson (Southern California). The full list of new members is here. “As one of the nation’s oldest learned societies and indepen..
Inside Higher Ed has an article on Anna Stubblefield, the Rutgers-Newark philosophy professor accused of sexually assaulting a man (referred to in various accounts as “D.J.” or “John Roe”) with cerebral palsy.
In 2011, Stubblefield allegedly met with the man’s parents to inform them that the relationship had become sexual. The parents… say Stubblefield molested th..
I believe it is good for academics to take a turn in administration. It helps them to see how institutions function, and to befriend the people in the offices; it helps them to gain a broader picture of how universities operate, and where they fail; it helps them as individuals work more efficiently, given firmer pressures on schedules. And I think it is good for th..
Inside Higher Ed has a fairly detailed article on recent developments on the goings-on in the department of philosophy at the University of Colorado, including the AAUP’s response to the release of the climate report by the APA’s Committee on the Status of Women, and the university’s treatment of philosopher Dan Kaufman.
The makers of the video game, The Old City, say that it is “philosophically founded,” and this article about the game uses some version of the word “philosophy” about a dozen times. “Think of it like a Lewis and Clark diary to epistemology,” the lead designer says. Still, it is hard to get a grasp of what they are talking about, or whether they know what they are ta..
If there were a pill that could replicate all the benefits of running—heath, looks, even enjoyment—would you keep running? In my experience, the longer a person has been running, the more likely they are to answer ‘yes’: to say they would continue running. That is, I think, because running does something to you that is quite different from, and independent of, its h..
Writing in the Chronicle of Higher Education, Rebecca Newberger Goldstein (previously) argues that philosophy is making progress, and argues for a particular conception of what philosophical progress is: increased coherence.
Everyone thinks happiness is at least sometimes good, but what is it? Dan Haybron (St. Louis University) takes on some traditional accounts and defends the “emotional-state” view in the most recent edition of the The Stone.
Lori Gruen (Wesleyan University) has a post at OUPblog in which she makes use of the recent giraffe and lion killings at the Copenhagen Zoo as a launching point for some brief reflections on the ethics of zoos.
Andrew Chapman, a philosophy graduate student at University of Colorado, has started a website called 1000-Word Philosophy, a collection of introductory philosophy essays, each 1000 words or less. From the site’s about page:
Professional philosophy can seem abstract, esoteric, and hyper-specialized. But we all ask and try to answer philosophical questions myriad time..
I don’t know what the other competitors for this title are, but apparently the world’s largest philosophy and music festival, How The Light Gets In, will be taking place from May 22nd to June 1st in Hay-on-Wye in Wales. It is indeed a big event. Philosophers on the roster include Simon Blackburn, Nancy Cartwright, John Harris, John Heil, Angie Hobbs, Ted Honderich, ..
“And what kind of man am I? One of those who would gladly be refuted if anything I say is not true, and would gladly refute another who says what is not true, but would be no less happy to be refuted myself than to refute…”
That is Socrates (Gorgias 458A). I put that quote on all of my syllabi, as a reminder to my students of what I like to call the “philosophical d..
Graham Priest (CUNY, Melbourne) presents a brief defense of the history of philosophy over at the OUP blog.
One of my friends said that he regards the history of philosophy as rather like a text book of chess openings. Just as it is part of being a good chess player to know the openings, it is part of being a good philosopher to know standard views and arguments, so..