Diversify or Die

There’s an interesting piece in the Stone today on the consequences of philosophy’s Anglo-European blinders: If Philosophy Won’t Diversify, Let’s Call It What It Really Is. Garfield and Van Norden suggest that the systematic failure to address non-Western sources impoverishes the discipline and belies any claim to universality. And what a wonderfully provocative list of addenda… Continue reading Diversify or Die

Evidence-Based Parenting, Spanking, and Authoritative Parenting Styles: or, How to Get My Daughter to Brush Her Teeth

Crying Baby, but not My Crying Baby from Flickr user donnieray (CC By 2.0)

My daughter doesn’t like to have her teeth brushed. She’s not even two years old, yet, so while that worries me, I guess it’s something we’ve still got time to correct. But one question I often wonder about is whether there’s something we could do differently to change her behavior. She’s maybe twenty-five pounds, right… Continue reading Evidence-Based Parenting, Spanking, and Authoritative Parenting Styles: or, How to Get My Daughter to Brush Her Teeth

What is the belief you hold that is most likely to be wrong?

Another way of putting this question is: how does your ideology and social setting blind you? One way to answer is to look at those beliefs that you have the most incentive to deceive yourself about. What are your biases? For instance, I’m probably not as smart or as caring as I think I am, because… Continue reading What is the belief you hold that is most likely to be wrong?

This is What Epistocracy Looks Like

Most academics know some version of the critique of elite rule, administrative power, and centralized regulation by experts. Hannah Arendt called bureaucracy the “rule of No Man;” Michel Foucault described the overlap of legislative power, knowledge-production, and the apparatus of discipline and control; Iris Marion Young defended simple street activism against the demand that political… Continue reading This is What Epistocracy Looks Like

Deciding Whether or Not to Tell a Story

When I was an undergraduate, I took a class called “Truth and Beauty” with the poet Ann Lauterbach. It was basically a class on reading and writing essays, but I took it because I was a philosophy major and I thought it would be about aesthetics, i.e. about whether judgments about beauty can be true… Continue reading Deciding Whether or Not to Tell a Story