Traditions

How to Stand Up For Human Rights in the Age of Trump

Ken Roth in Foreign Policy: One year ago, there seemed to be no stopping politicians around the globe who claimed to speak for “the people” but built followings by demonizing unpopular minorities, attacking human rights principles, and fueling distrust of democratic institutions. Today, a popular reaction in a broad range of countries, bolstered in some cases by political leaders with the courage to stand up for human rights, has left the fate of many of these populist agendas less certain. Where the pushback has been strong, populist advances have been limited. But where centrists have capitulated in the face of hatred and intolerance, the populists have flourished. As this struggle has played out, many Western powers have become more inwardly oriented, leaving an increasingly fragmented world. With the United States led by a president who displays a disturbing fondness for rights-trampling strongmen, and the United Kingdom preoccupied by Brexit, two traditional if flawed defenders of human rights globally are often missing in action. Meanwhile, Germany, France, and their European Union partners have been buffeted by racist and xenophobic political forces at home and have not always been willing to pick up the slack. And democracies such as Australia, Brazil, Indonesia, Japan, and South Africa have been heard actively defending human rights only rarely. The retreat of many governments that once championed human rights has left an open field for murderous leaders and their enablers. Mass atrocities have proliferated with near impunity in countries including Syria, Myanmar, and South Sudan. Authoritarian leaders... -

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God was dead: to begin with.

God was dead: to begin with. And romance was dead. Chivalry was dead. Poetry, the novel, painting, they were all dead, and art was dead. Theatre and cinema were both dead. Literature was dead. The book was dead. Modernism, postmodernism, realism and surrealism were all dead. Jazz was dead, pop music, disco, rap, classical music, dead. Culture was dead. Decency, society, family values were dead. The past was dead. History was dead. The welfare state was dead. Politics was dead. Democracy was dead. Communism, fascism, neoliberalism, capitalism, all dead, and marxism, dead, feminism, also dead. Political correctness, dead. Racism was dead. Religion was dead. Thought was dead. Hope was dead. Truth and fiction were both dead. The media was dead. The internet was dead.... -

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Is evolutionary science due for a major overhaul – or is talk of ‘revolution’ misguided?

Kevin Laland in Aeon: When researchers at Emory University in Atlanta trained mice to fear the smell of almonds (by pairing it with electric shocks), they found, to their consternation, that both the children and grandchildren of these mice were spontaneously afraid of the same smell. That is not supposed... -

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How Not to Read Black Intellectuals

Lewis Gordon on how not to read black intellectuals: ¶ The aim of What Fanon Said is to offer a study of Fanon and his ideas in their own right. “What Fanon said,” then, pertains not only to the black letter words in his writings but also to their... -

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How Not to Read Black Intellectuals Lewis Gordon on how not to read black intellectuals: The aim of What Fanon Said is to offer a study of Fanon and his ideas in their own right. “What Fanon said,” then, pertains not only to the black letter words in his writings but also to their spirit, their meaning. This task also involves stepping outside of a tendency that often emerges in the study of intellectuals of African descent—namely, the reduction of their... Omedi Ochieng -


Plato: The Timaeus Plato: The Timaeus There is nothing easy about the Timaeus. Its length, limited dramatic discourse, and arid subject-matter make for a dense and menacing work. But make no mistake, it is a menacing work of great subtly and depth. Cosmology has traditionally received the bulk of scholarly attention. No less important, however, are the dialogue’s … Continue reading Plato: The Timaeus → Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy -


Is evolutionary science due for a major overhaul – or is talk of ‘revolution’ misguided? Kevin Laland in Aeon: When researchers at Emory University in Atlanta trained mice to fear the smell of almonds (by pairing it with electric shocks), they found, to their consternation, that both the children and grandchildren of these mice were spontaneously afraid of the same smell. That is not supposed to happen. Generations of schoolchildren have been taught that the inheritance of acquired characteristics is impossible. A mouse should not be born with something its parents... 3 Quarks Daily -


How to Stand Up For Human Rights in the Age of Trump Ken Roth in Foreign Policy: One year ago, there seemed to be no stopping politicians around the globe who claimed to speak for “the people” but built followings by demonizing unpopular minorities, attacking human rights principles, and fueling distrust of democratic institutions. Today, a popular reaction in a broad range of countries, bolstered in some cases by political leaders with the courage to stand up for human rights, has left the fate of many of... 3 Quarks Daily -


All-Night Philosophy Events At Over 120 Locations Worldwide Later This Month Overnight “philosophy and ideas” events will be taking place all around the world later this month.  From January 27th to 28th, the Brooklyn Public Philosophers, in conjunction with the Brooklyn Public Library and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, will be putting on A Night of Philosophy and Ideas, “a free 12-hour exchange of ideas” with a variety of philosophers and other thinkers.  Ian Olasov, a PhD student in philosophy at CUNY and founder of Brooklyn... Daily Nous -


Volpi on the ontologized πρᾶξις. To be sure, one must also add that in taking up again the Aristotelian determinations of πρᾶξις, Heidegger 'ontologizes' them and that this ontologization is the equivalent for him of a radicalization. For it permits him to grasp the fundamental unitary connection which upholds these determinations and which is, notoriously, temporality conceived in an originary way (Zeitlichkeit). At the end of all this, and once he has carried through his... Enowning -


Volpi Heidegger AristotleBraig offers incidental etymological reconstructions of the concepts examined, probably Heidegger's initiation to the etymologies that meander almost everywhere throughout his work, and in virtue of which he discovers in the originary etymology of key words of Western thought the seeds of deep metaphysical meanings. Enowning -


Georg [György] Lukács [Revised entry by Titus Stahl on January 18, 2018. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] Georg (Gyorgy) Lukacs (1885 - 1971) was a literary theorist and philosopher who is widely viewed as one of the founders of "Western Marxism". Lukacs is best known for his pre-World War II writings in literary theory, aesthetic theory and Marxist philosophy. Today, his most widely read works are the Theory of the Novel of 1916 and History and Class Consciousness... Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy -


Privacy [Revised entry by Judith DeCew on January 18, 2018. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] The term "privacy" is used frequently in ordinary language as well as in philosophical, political and legal discussions, yet there is no single definition or analysis or meaning of the term. The concept of privacy has broad historical roots in sociological and anthropological discussions about how extensively it is valued and preserved in various cultures. Moreover, the concept has historical origins... Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy -


Axiomatic Theories of Truth [Revised entry by Volker Halbach and Graham E. Leigh on January 18, 2018. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] An axiomatic theory of truth is a deductive theory of truth as a primitive undefined predicate. Because of the liar and other paradoxes, the axioms and rules have to be chosen carefully in order to avoid inconsistency. Many axiom systems for the truth predicate have been discussed in the literature and their respective properties been analysed. Several... Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy -


Mini-Heap Looking for interesting stuff around the web, philosophers? Here’s the latest Mini-Heap—10 recent items from the Heap of Links, the frequently updated list of links to material elsewhere you might want to check out. The Heap of Links consists partly of suggestions from readers; if you find something online that you think would be of interest to the philosophical community, please send it in for consideration for the Heap. Discussion welcome. “U.K.’s immigration officers have denied a Pakistani humanist’s application... Daily Nous -


God was dead: to begin with. God was dead: to begin with. And romance was dead. Chivalry was dead. Poetry, the novel, painting, they were all dead, and art was dead. Theatre and cinema were both dead. Literature was dead. The book was dead. Modernism, postmodernism, realism and surrealism were all dead. Jazz was dead, pop music, disco, rap, classical music, dead. Culture was dead. Decency, society, family values were dead. The past was dead. History was dead. The welfare state... Synthetic Zero -


zionism and primordialism Ori Weisberg at The Forward: Indeed, today’s Zionists often view Israel not as a modern state, but as the rebirth of ancient sovereignty. And yet, this view is not absolutely historically accurate, either. While artifacts certainly substantiate the existence of a Jewish presence in ancient Israel, this view projects a modern nationalist movement onto a historical period that predates nationalism by four millennia. And just as Abbas’s comments hurt the chances of negotiations, the Jewish... 3 Quarks Daily -


populism & its critics Roger Kimball at The New Criterion: At the heart of Trumpist populism, however—and I suspect of all populism—is a different yearning: for security, especially for those who feel forgotten and left behind. If Reaganite conservatism, at least in theory, has been deeply skeptical of the power of government to manage free markets and create prosperity, at the core of Trumpist populism—and maybe of all populism—is faith in governmental power, or at least a willingness born of desperation to use such... 3 Quarks Daily -


The Decline of The New Criterion Daniel Zalkus at The Baffler: You see, The New Criterion was founded in 1982 to be a kind of National Redoubt of High Culture, an earthwork against, as the editors subtly put it in the first issue, “the insidious assault on mind that was one of the most repulsive features of the radical movement of the sixties.” It was the brainchild of pianist Samuel Lipman and New York’s crankiest critic, Hilton Kramer, who for many years thundered from his New... 3 Quarks Daily -


Happy Birthday, Emmanuel Chukwudi Eze! Study of an African’s Head, 1830 by Paul-Jean Flandron, Seattle Art Museum. I could not find a portrait of Dr. Eze that I could share, so I chose this powerful portrait instead. I used it to illustrate a piece shared here some weeks ago at O.P. by Dag Herbjørnsrud, which describes the ideas of the 17th-century Ethiopian philosopher Zera Yacob. Eze also studied Yacob’s ideas. Emmanuel Chukwudi Eze, born in Nigeria on January 18th, 1963, made a... Ordinary Philosophy -


Deleuze and Ancient Greek Physics: The Image of Nature (NDPR Review) A new book on Deleuze and the "image of nature." ---- Deleuze and Ancient Greek Physics: The Image of Nature //  Michael James Bennett, Deleuze and Ancient Greek Physics: The Image of Nature, Bloomsbury, 2017, 288pp., $114.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781474284677. Reviewed by Brent Adkins, Roanoke College The scholarship that examines Deleuze's use of and relation to Hellenic philosophy is rich After Nature -


Philosophical Star Trek Episodes About 20 years ago, I taught a college course titled: “Philosophy and Star Trek.” I also remember the original Star Trek series premiering on TV in 1966 and I’ve seen all of the original and the Next Generation episodes multiple times. Here are some particularly philosophical episodes from the original series, with the caveat that such lists are subjective and I’m sure I’m omitting some classics. (Episodes in bold are particular favorites.) Title         ... Reason and Meaning -


Benjamin Franklin’s Retirement and Reinvention William Thorndike Jr. in Harvard Magazine: Two hundred and seventy years ago this month, aged 42 and weeks from the midpoint of his long life, Benjamin Franklin did something highly unusual. He retired. Specifically, he sat down at a perennially cluttered desk in his cramped Philadelphia print shop and signed an innovative “Co-Partnership” agreement with his foreman, David Hall. The document was a scant two pages in length, but it immediately changed the trajectory of Franklin’s... 3 Quarks Daily -


CFA: Educating Character Through the Arts Educating Character Through the Arts University of Birmingham Conference Centre, 19th-21st July, 2018  Open Call for Abstracts From antiquity to the present, the virtues – construed in terms of such excellences of character as honesty, fairness, compassion and courage – have been widely regarded as integral to human moral life. But how might human agents – particularly the young – come to understand, or acquire, virtuous character? While many might nowadays look to empirical psychology or... Virtue Blog -