Essays

As Z puts it, “As to the Edgy Essays, the difference I guess is that the essay content is somewhat longer than the diary posts, and slightly more, well, essay-like and less first-personal. The diary posts, I’m thinking, will become more individualized and first-personal as we go on…”

So there you go. These are the Edgy Essays:

Multi-Culti Is Anti-Kanti.

(November 23, 2017)

For … non-Kantian philosophers, there are no persistent problems — save perhaps the existence of Kantians. — R. Rorty[i] What do you think of the following argument? ARGUMENT 1 (i) E.T. is a fictional philosopher. (ii) E.T. is an alien of indeterminate gender who is personally biased against women, non-white races, non-Europeans, and blind people. (iii) Therefore, E.T.’s … [continue reading]

Canon Wars, Round 2: The Multi-Culti Critique of Western Philosophy.

(November 6, 2017)

Mainstream contemporary professional academic philosophy is seriously under attack, and not just by APP. In a recent edgy essay, “Taking Down Descartes: The Canon Wars,” I critically analyzed and historically contextualized Christia Mercer’s very interesting New York Times article from 25 September 2017, “Descartes Is Not Our Father,” and drew two main conclusions: It’s … … [continue reading]

Performance Philosophy, Public Philosophy, and Borderless Philosophy.

(October 18, 2017)

Two New Movements in Contemporary Philosophy Two extremely interesting movements in contemporary philosophy have emerged simultaneously, but also almost entirely independently of one another, within the past five years: performance philosophy and public philosophy. I think that both performance philosophy and public philosophy are not only extremely interesting, but also extremely important. That is because … [continue reading]

On Philosophical Failures.

(October 4, 2017)

Eighteen months ago, in “‘Failed Academics’: Schopenhauer, Peirce, and the (D)evolution of University Philosophy,” APP wrote about the meta-philosophically fascinating phenomenon of great philosophers who are also notable social “failures,” and in particular “failed academics.” We focused on Schopenhauer and Peirce: but we might just as easily have written about Diogenes, Socrates, Spinoza, Kierkegaard, Thoreau, … [continue reading]

Taking Down Descartes: The Canon Wars.

(September 27, 2017)

The history of modern philosophy begins with Descartes, right? Wrong. In “Descartes Is Not Our Father,” a very interesting–but I also think, very wrong-headed– essay published in The New York Times on 25 September 2017, Christia Mercer writes this: René Descartes has long been credited with the near-single-handed creation of modern philosophy. Generations of students … [continue reading]

The Duck, the Fish, and the Sharks: A Parable.

(September 20, 2017)

Almost everyone has heard the story about the duck and the fish. Some ducks are swimming around in a pond; one of them looks down and sees some fish swimming around directly beneath him. The duck says: “Hey guys! How’s the water down there?” Then one of the fish turns to another one and says: … [continue reading]

Can There Be a Real Philosophy Department?

(August 16, 2017)

What is “real,” or what one might call “authentic,” philosophy? Can there be philosophy departments that practice and promote such authentic philosophy? Take the former question first. From the home page of Against Professional Philosophy (http://againstprofphil.org), we have the following answer to consider: By real philosophy, we mean synoptic, systematic, rational reflection on the individual … [continue reading]

Philosophy Unbound.

(July 2, 2017)

The painted veil, by those who were, called life, Which mimicked, as with colours idly spread, All men believed or hoped, is torn aside; The loathsome mask has fallen, the man remains Sceptreless, free, uncircumscribed, but man Equal, unclassed, tribeless, and nationless, Exempt from awe, worship, degree, the king Over himself; just, gentle, wise: but … [continue reading]

My Application for APA Diversity and Inclusiveness Funding. Kantian Social Anarchists R Us.

(June 26, 2017)

APP Editors’ Note: i.e. kantgoldman lives in a driftwood shanty on a beach in the Pacific Northwest, where s/he creates practical philosophy, channels Immanuel Kant and Emma Goldman, and dances like nobody’s business. Dear i.e., Time is running out to submit proposals for the APA’s small grant fund and diversity and inclusiveness funding programs. Proposals … [continue reading]

Professional Philosophy For and Against the Enlightenment.

(June 12, 2017)

The modern university and modern philosophy, alike, are founded on the intellectual, moral, and political ideals of the Enlightenment. But in the second decade of the 21st century, an era in which the university is not only intensely pressured from without by the demands of neoliberal politics and advanced capitalist values, but also intensely pressured … [continue reading]