“What’s Wrong with Contemporary Philosophy?” (Topoi Re-Post. With an Afterword by Z.)

1. “What’s Wrong With Contemporary Philosophy?,” by Kevin Mulligan, Peter Simons, and Barry Smith  In Topoi  (2006) 25:63–67  I: Philosophy in Three Parts Philosophy in the West now divides into three parts—Analytic Philosophy (AP), Continental Philosophy (CP), and History of Philosophy (HP). Analytic Philosophy, although it comes in many varieties, has four striking properties. First, … [continue reading]

Passionless Professionalism in Academic Philosophy.

In his introduction to The Passions, Robert Solomon quite rightly insists that philosophy really matters. The field is not (or should not be) “a self-generating profession of conjectures and refutations” that concern “a self-contained system of problems and puzzles” (p. 1). Instead, we should keep in mind that because we are all philosophers, thinking about … [continue reading]

Thinking Inside the Box: The Institutional Structure of “Hard” Problems in Professional Philosophy.

1. Gaps, Knots, and Philosophical Pictures  A classical or typical “hard” philosophical problem has a three-part structure. (i) There is an explanatory gap between some set of basic facts and another set of basic facts. E.g., in the classical mind-body problem: “how is consciousness or subjective experience, which is fundamentally mental, possible in a fundamentally … [continue reading]

Philosophical Works, Philosophical Theories, Real Philosophy, and REAL Philosophy. Anarcho-Philosophical Dialogues 2. By Boethius, L_E, OP, X1, Y, & Z.

OP:  I hope you all feel ready for a new discussion! My question is: What type of philosophical theories should real philosophy produce? This has been on my mind since the discussion on APP that followed “The Pre-Structured Professional.” In that discussion, the participants agreed that some or even many current philosophical theories don’t do … [continue reading]

How the “Continentals” Internalized Their Oppressors.

1. Scientism and Noumenal Realism in Analytic Philosophy. It cannot be rationally denied that “Analytic philosophy” (henceforth without the shudder quotes) has always been predominantly and even aggressively scientistic, whether by way of formal science (logic and mathematics) or by way of natural science (primarily physics, but also chemistry and biology). The Analytic tradition began … [continue reading]