UCSB Philosophy Blog

Members of the UCSB Department of Philosophy and anyone else are welcome to talk philosophy with us. Bring your own brain.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Philblog update #n

Hey folks and Folk. First some phildept updates:
The Santa Barbarians group has once again awoken from its fitful slumbers, meeting last Tuesday evening to discuss Ned Markosian's article "How Fast Does Time Pass?" (PPR 53: 829-44), and this coming Monday (Jan 23) at 8pm (contact Tony Anderson for info, as usual) to discuss David Lewis's "The Problem of Temporary Intrinsics" (an excerpt from ON THE PLURALITY OF WORLDS) and Dean Zimmerman's "Temporary Intrinsics and Presentism", both in Peter van Inwagen & Dean Zimmerman (eds.), METAPHYSICS: THE BIG QUESTIONS (Blackwell, 1998).
The Metaphysics Discussion Group meets again next Thursday to discuss this beastie: Yablo, Stephen & A. Gallois. "Does Ontology Rest On A Mistake?" Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society, Supp. Volume 72 (1998): 229-261. See the group's site for more info.
Today (Friday, Jan 20) we're also having a department colloquium with Peter Graham from UC Riverside (see the department site for info).
Next Tuesday the Guerrilla Radio Show will discuss Intelligent Design Theory. See the site.

I've been thinking intently lately about what Philosophy is, what distinguishes it from other intellectual activities, etc. I'll probably write something up about it this weekend. I'd like to have some comments, because I'm worried that it's either too trivial to be worth stating or that it's missing some important facet of this baroque beauty we call philosophy.


  • At 8:45 PM, Blogger Tedla said…

    Hey Luke:

    I look forward to reading what you'll share with us about what you're lately thinking about what philosophy is.

    Yes, this question has increasingly loomed really large in my thoughts as well and I'll respond to your thoughts when you post them. I've been very much frustrated, for some time, with answers to this question and there was a time, once, when I thought of philosophy as nothing more than a sophisticated magic pursued by some folks who think of themselves so highly and differently from the rest of the society only until someone asks them what they think philosophy is. There did not seem to be a truly compelling and satisfying answer to this question, at least for me just couple of years ago. Now I think I do not go as far as I did then but then my deeply unsettling skepticism about the nature of philosophy, i.e., my metaphilosophical reflections on philosophy are still flourishing as I'm thinking of doing a serious research to answer some of my disturbing philosophical questions about philosophy itself is!

  • At 11:10 PM, Blogger the metaphysician said…

    I guess us philosophers can take (some) comfort in the fact that "What is the nature of philosophy?" is itself a philosophical question. It properly belongs in our discipline. :)

  • At 9:20 PM, Blogger the metaphysician said…

    Well, the Guerrilla Radio Show this week (on Intelligent Design (non)theory) was less than what I'd hoped. I was expecting something more lively, and controversial.

  • At 8:22 PM, Blogger Luke Manning said…

    Tedla: I'm a little busy at the moment, and haven't yet typed up my post about "What is Philosophy?". I should have it up by Friday evening at the latest.

    Metaphysician: Yes, I had the same impression of the GRS show, and I've posted to the GRS blog about it. Check it out for a (fairly detailed) picture of where the conversation might have gone!


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