Showing posts from December, 2022

Nothing That Is Not There

Some brief reflections as we approach the new year. I am just returning from a trip to see my partner's family, wherein I spent much time with my little nephew, Kai. There was something entirely fantastic about seeing how, at one years old, he relates to the world. He is so intensely curious about things that seem so mundane. I saw him experience real joy in the triumph of working out how to turn around so as to climb some stairs in a playground. Once at night we went out for a bit of late grocery shopping and it was remarkable how he would seem so engrossed in all the details of an entirely unremarkable street. If philosophy begins in wonder then he's off to a good start.    It caused me to introspect on who I am, or maybe where I am, as a philosopher. People close to me know that I have been on and off convincing myself that I ought stop doing novel research. I am periodically overcome by the conviction that, in some way, what I do or how I do it is making the field worse --

The Role of Mathematics and Intellectual History in (my) Philosophy

Philosophers tend to think other philosophers are doing bad work and resent their success. I find this tendency most pronounced among mid-to-late stage grad students -- people who are good enough to see the flaws in what's published and aptly feel entitled to critique it as a full fledged member of the community. But who have not yet had the gruelling experience of repeatedly trying to better and realising that you can't, that in fact your work is just fodder for the next batch of sharp eyed youngsters hungry to prove themselves. So it goes, so it goes. One consequence of this is that we all have to get used to justifying our own choice of method or approach to topics. There's always someone out there who thinks its just obvious that you have approached your question in totally the wrong manner, and any non-muddle-head would clearly see that you ought to have... well it just so happens they have a draft manuscript they could share if you are interested. One gets used to fie