“There has to be a balance between the formal and the conversational.” (more…)
“I find no good reason to think that philosophers today do philosophy better than philosophers 600 or 2000 years ago.” (more…)
“ME: Have you considered teaching Chinese philosophy in your department?
COLLEAGUE: Philosophy is by definition the tradition that goes back to Greece…” (more…)
“Intuitions and common sense are not, I claim, a good basis on which to reach philosophical conclusions.” (more…)
Philosophy of Science Communication is not just the Philosophy of “Science Communication,” but also the Communication of “Philosophy of Science”. Philosophy of science is not well-known outside of the philosophical discipline. (more…)
What’s the relationship between common sense and philosophy?
I do take seriously Heidegger’s claim that some of his key philosophical ideas provided the basis for his political commitments. I have tried to understand how he might have conceived of those connections and to trace some of his efforts to develop those lines of thought. I don’t think that this renders his philosophy irredeemable but neither do I think that one can..
In 2015 I received the National Humanities Medal at a ceremony at the White House. President Obama himself put the medal around my neck, and the rumor was that he made the final choice. In the speech he gave before awarding all the medals, in addition to citing my work on Gödel and Spinoza and Plato, he spoke of me as the philosopher who sometimes chooses to write n..
The relationship between truth and social progress is then an optimistic bet. I hope that knowing the truth is part of what sets us free. But that’s an empirical hunch that could well turn out to be wrong. (more…)
“I think metaphysics is what it’s always been—and it’s hard to say what that is!”
Anthony Booth, reader in philosophy at the University of Sussex, called his 2017 book Analytic Islamic Philosophy, yet he doesn’t think there is much to the division between analytic and Continental philosophy. (more…)
“the whiplash of (rather quickly) moving from an intensely conservative, fundamentalist world into a progressive, academic world… taught me two things…”
“There’s no such thing as being good or bad at philosophy.” (more…)
“The trouble with physicists who denigrate philosophy is that they read the wrong philosophers, which sad to say is most philosophers.”
The body of published scholarship in my discipline—academic philosophy—suffers from a host of authorship violations, including plagiarism, undisclosed pseudonyms, and duplicate publication. These problems appear to be largely unknown to many in the field, even though some of the most egregious cases have appeared with the top presses. (more…)
“I worry that when most of the authors we read are white and male, some aspects of the subject matter get distorted, and it’s hard to tell where the essential stuff ends and the accidental stuff begins.” (more…)
How do we decide whether a metaphysical system is the right one or not? Empirical evidence doesn’t seem to be decisive, and given that some metaphysicians have impossible worlds and Meinongian objects it seems anything might happen in such a system. Are all metaphysical issues undecidable—and extending this thought to philosophy generally do you agree with the tho..
Our histories of philosophy are astonishingly parochial. Across two and half millennia and a whole planet, there are basically only 9 historical figures you can write about without running the risk of marginalizing yourself as a young philosopher. (more…)
In an interview at What Is It Like To Be A Philosopher?, Christian Miller, the A. C. Reid Professor of Philosophy at Wake Forest University, discusses, among other things, the relationship between his religious and philosophical commitments. (more…)
Daniel Kodsi, an undergraduate at Oxford and founding editor of the Oxford Review of Books, writes about his interview of Amia Srinivasan, philosophy lecturer in the UCL Philosophy Department and fellow of All Souls College, Oxford: “I start the interview with a question I feel strangely silly for having, but which I cannot help but blurt out: why is philosophy so ..
Many institutions control your choices in various ways, and bend your time to their aims, by suggesting that you must serve limitlessly or else you have not adequately demonstrated your devotion to the mission. It is satisfying and empowering to ignore that narrative… (more…)
“But one great thing about our profession is how flat and un-hierarchical it is. I still think it’s the best job any one can have.”
“Phenomenology is one of the major strands of post Kantian philosophy. But it isn’t easy to pin down exactly what the name captures. Can you first sketch for us what you think is its core and whether there actually is a core—something some philosophers have disputed haven’t they?” (more…)
Philosophy, of all disciplines, should never embrace dogmas—it is supposed to be the quintessentially critical subject—and yet now we’re full to the brim with them. You cannot criticize or even question the current orthodoxies regarding race, gender, or sexual orientation within the institutional framework of academic philosophy.
“I think metaphysics is the real theory of everything: nothing is off its remit.” (more…)
“But what I loved about philosophy, and what got me hooked in that intro course to begin with, was the sense that you could fail well. That you could think and think and think and never be assured of being right: that you could be good at philosophy and careful, indeed obsessive, and still end up being wrong.” (more…)