Which Philosophy Ideas Make for Good Costumes?


Which philosophical ideas (or examples) would make for a good Halloween costume?

Yes, Brain in Vat. We all think we’ve thought of that one already. What else?

Eternal Recurrence? You went as that last year! And the year before.

I suppose you could go as anything. Just make a sign that says “p & ¬ p” and walk behind it.

How would you go about dressing up as the Categorical Imperative? Remember, it would have to be the kind of costume everyone could wear.

Looking for a sexy costume idea? Go as Philosophy Department Budget. It barely covers anything.

Or go as Everything. It leaves nothing to the imagination.

 

Happy Halloween, everyone!

Logic Jack-O-Lantern

(image via @Replicakill)

 

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Jan Dowell
Jan Dowell
5 years ago

Sobel and I have dressed as a pair of hands. Added bonus: Belly-bop high-fives.Report

Annaleigh
Annaleigh
5 years ago

I was what it’s like to be a bat once, and that went over quite well.Report

Blake
Blake
Reply to  Annaleigh
5 years ago

Tried it once, no one grasped it.Report

Adam Omelianchuk
Adam Omelianchuk
5 years ago

Brain. In. A. Vat.Report

Grad
Grad
5 years ago

Turtles all the way down this year.Report

Sara L. Uckelman
5 years ago

Madison, WI, is famed for its Halloween parade on State St., so the members of the philosophy department there always had a lot to live up there. When my husband and I were there as grad students, one year we went as triangularity seducing the color purple (he, with a triangular frame, me dressed in purple silk, he occasionally paying me compliments or offering me chocolates), and another year we dressed in green/brown, wore duck bills, and had name-tags saying “Property of B.R.” (We were Russell’s pair o’ ducks.)Report

Julinna
Julinna
5 years ago

A Cartesian evil demon, a Humean bundle of perceptions, and the famous picture of the Leviathan (attach a bunch of dolls to yourself) would be pretty easy to pull off. Maybe even a Chinese room or a Platonic tripartite soul would be recognizable to philosophers. For a group costume, it would be fun to go as a bunch of monads; Thesis, Antithesis and Synthesis, or Jim and the Indians (questionable culturally, I know!).Report

Stephanos
Stephanos
5 years ago

Anomalous monism would an interesting challenge…Report

David Livingstone Smith
5 years ago

Go as yourself: nobody will recognize you. Humean variant: go as a bundle of impressions.Report

Sam
Sam
5 years ago

A friend recently pulled off “grue,” using two identical outfits from target, one blue and one green. When it came to time t, a little superman action made for many confused party-goers…Report

Louie Generis
Louie Generis
5 years ago

I went as Louie Generis this year, but everyone in my department just thought I forgot to wear a costume. Secret identities are tricky.Report

Kyle
Kyle
5 years ago

Abominable Conjunctions!Report

Olivia Bailey
Olivia Bailey
5 years ago

Things I’ve seen and/or things I’d like to pull off someday: Gavagai, Thomson’s famous violinist, a bound variable, a utility monster. This year I’m the owl of minerva.Report

P.D.
5 years ago

I once attended a philosophical costume party as the present King of France.Report

MA-Student
MA-Student
5 years ago

The thing in itself.Report

An On
An On
5 years ago

Veil of ignorance, surrounded by a reflective “equilibrium”Report

Alan White
Alan White
5 years ago

Nobody noticed when I went as a spacetime point. This year I’m expanding to a Planck length and see if that’s an improvement. If not, next year I’ll round up a cat costume, a big box, a Geiger counter-actuated dispenser, a radium-dial watch, a vial of potassium cyanide, some sulfuric acid. . .Report

Anonymous Undergrad
Anonymous Undergrad
5 years ago

Duck-rabbit.Report

Alyssa
Alyssa
5 years ago

I thought of going as the Idea of the Good this year. Anyone have one of those sun costumes from the spokesguy for Jimmy Dean breakfast sandwiches?Report

Friendly Undergrad
Friendly Undergrad
5 years ago

This year I’m going as the critique of pure reason, and only speaking in the passive voice. It’s the scariest book I know.Report

costume care
costume care
Reply to  Friendly Undergrad
5 years ago

A hat called logic; a sign reading, ‘language!’Report

Timothy
5 years ago

All one needs is a floor-to-head tape measure for being Protagoras’ ‘the measure of all things.’Report

Adam Omelianchuk
Adam Omelianchuk
5 years ago

A Lewisian possible world–the one in which only my counterpart and nothing else exists.Report

Ryan Lake
5 years ago

P.D. I’m sorry, but I have to ask – are you bald?Report

P.D.
Reply to  Ryan Lake
5 years ago

Nope. I wore a rather unconvincing bald cap. Nick Jolley was quick with the apt quote, “Hegelians, who love a synthesis, will say he wears a wig.”Report

SLH
SLH
5 years ago

I’ve often thought black-and-white Mary would be a good one.Report

Rob Tempio
Rob Tempio
5 years ago

I am an indexicalReport

Sean Work
Sean Work
5 years ago

Serial Killer Karl Popper. Walk around with a fake syringe and a large jar of clear liquid labelled “morphine”. Tell people you’re preparing to bite the bullet on the logical conclusion of negative utilitarianism.Report

Simon Fokt
5 years ago

I dressed up as the law of excluded middle once, one person even guessed what I was!Report

JA
JA
5 years ago

A nefarious neuroscientist, anyone?Report

D.
D.
5 years ago

I’m Rawls. Basically, I’m just dressing normally, but talking way more than normal about something boring and using terrible sentence structure. You can tell I’m already in character.Report

G
G
5 years ago

I’m going as Wittgenstein and leaving town.Report

PhD Student
PhD Student
5 years ago

I did Tabula Rasa last year – just hung a blank slate around my neck.

My Tabula wasn’t very Rasa by the end of the night, though.Report

Jeff Heikkinen
Jeff Heikkinen
5 years ago

As a grad student, I heard tell of a somewhat famous prof who put curly braces of cardboard or foam on either side of him and went as the set whose only member was himself.Report

D.
D.
Reply to  Jeff Heikkinen
5 years ago

So he went as his singleton. Get with the program!Report

PeteJ
5 years ago

I went as heterophenomenology and told stories all night.Report

Carlos
Carlos
5 years ago

Sam’s friend also went as overdetermination (belt and suspenders) one year. Another year, he went as a super rabbit with the proportional powers of a duck (Duck-Rabbit).

This year, he will be a reanimated corpse who is too depressed to *feel* anything (P-zombie).Report

Nick
Nick
5 years ago

I like to go in a suit with no tie, and constantly pointing directly in front of me. Most people ask if I’m a demonstrative or David Kaplan. That’s when I inform the inquirer that I am actually Wittgenstein’s Poker and poke them.Report

E. Walker
E. Walker
5 years ago

I’ve gone as The Best of All Possible Worlds: Make it look like you just won a pageant: wear a crown or tiara, and a sash that says, “Mister [or Miss] Actual World.”

I’ve also gone as Poststructualist Me: I suspended quotation marks around my head. Just a signifier, man.

Last year I was Falling Under a Concept (so, I was an Object?): I put a wire in my tie to make it stick straight up.Report

Adam Omelianchuk
Adam Omelianchuk
5 years ago

You could wear an NYU cap, Princeton sunglasses, a Rutgers T-shirt, Michigan shorts, and Yale socks and go as the PGR report!Report

Katy Abramson
Katy Abramson
5 years ago

Okay, everybody talking about Hume on personal identity: REPUBLIC, not bundle. T.1.4.7.19ff
{both Hume and Halloween are v. important, so if we’re going to do this, let’s do it right, shall we? 🙂 }Report