David Brooks on Interconnectedness

The New York Times columnist David Brooks today sounds a little Hegelian. Commenting on Douglas Hofstadter’s account (in his recent book, I Am A Strange Loop) of his connection to his late wife Carol, Brooks is taken by the interconnection that Hofstadter continues to feel with her. Looking at a picture of Carol, Hofstadter recounts,… Continue reading David Brooks on Interconnectedness

Lady Bird

I have to say that I am sad that Lady Bird Johnson has passed on. In Austin, where I went to school, she was always a hovering presence, somehow softening the other LBJ’s legacy, monumentally inscribed in that library on the other side of the University of Texas campus. I saw in my lifetime Texas… Continue reading Lady Bird

More on the ESF Rankings

In my last post I expressed concern about the European Science Foundation’s ranking of philosophy journals, a reputational ranking that seems skewed toward a narrow spectrum of philosophy journals. The Feminist Philosophers blog has information on how to weigh in on this ranking.   The blog reports that the ESF welcomes feedback and that it has… Continue reading More on the ESF Rankings

GIGO or the new rankings of philosophy journals

It was a philosopher, Charles Babbage, who first coined the term “garbage in, garbage out,” a term invaluable in understanding that computers only work as well as what is plugged into them. And now the term is coming back full circle to philosophy, at least if one wants to make sense of the latest misbegotten… Continue reading GIGO or the new rankings of philosophy journals

The Bad Boy of Philosophy

Last Friday, at age 75, Richard Rorty died. Yesterday both the New York Times and the Washington Post ran nice obituaries, highlighting his youth in a socialist family and his adulthood as a renegade philosopher who’d splashily divorced analytic philosophy in order to embrace American pragmatism. The break-up began in the 60s. “He was a… Continue reading The Bad Boy of Philosophy

Political Crimes

I love this excerpt from Rajeev Barghava’s essay on truth commissions. He explains the difference between a political cirme an an everyday crime. A political crime aims to undermine someone’s sense of or title as a member of a political community, as someone worth hearing and heading.  Such seems to be at work in instances… Continue reading Political Crimes

Democracy and Higher Ed

Just back from a very intense three-day meeting on higher ed and democracy.  We — theorists and convenors of deliberative democracy — were brainstorming a network that would focus the academy’s attention on deliberative democracy.  To turn a phrase of the Kettering Foundation, “What kind of higher education does a public need in order for… Continue reading Democracy and Higher Ed

Published
Categorized as democracy

Deliberation & Social Justice

I’m in Portsmouth, NH, for a few days, meeting with a group convened by the University of New Hampshire. Among us are professors, theorists, and practitioners of deliberative democracy. Most everyone here is also deeply concerned about diversity, inclusiveness, and social justice. I sense a bit of tension between concern for democracy and concern for… Continue reading Deliberation & Social Justice