Philosophy In The News, Weekly: October 15 to 21, 2018

The best of the philosophical internet from: Al-Fanar Media, the APA Blog, 3:AM Magazine, 1000-Word Philosophy, Los Angeles Review of Books, The New York Times, Columbia Journalism Review, big think, VICE, Aeon, Public Books, Times Literary Supplement, Wired, Quartz, Tablet, Vanity Fair, The Philosopher’s Zone, The Independent, The Guardian, The Chronicle of Higher Education, VGR, and Five Books.

“In essence, philosophy education aims to prevent ideological indoctrination, to encourage inquiry and the pursuit of truth and the rejection of political despotism, hate and misconceptions about the unfamiliar.” Afaf A. Khoshman on the worthwhile pursuit of teaching philosophy in the Muslim world. | Al-Fanar Media

Elham Manea on how the Muslim veil debate tangles up Judith Butler’s already unintelligible postcolonial, postmodern discourse. | Tablet

Aaron J. Yarmel, director of Madison Public Philosophy, reflects on his attempt to teach Plato’s Allegory of the Cave to young people. |APA Blog

In a review of London’s HowTheLightGetsIn philosophy festival, Richard Marshall reveals his own petty and territorial academic neuroses about philosophy done by “philosophical bull-shitters and poseurs,” the type of “people rightly marginalized by decent philosophy departments.” | 3:AM Magazine

“Evolution could cause us to hold useful beliefs that are not true.” Michael Klenk’s short essay on the relationship between evolution and ethics doles out truthful beliefs that may not be useful. | 1000-Word Philosophy

“Maybe religion is the opiate of the masses, but then so is friendship and love.” Todd May reviews a book on why religion meets our emotional needs—even when it contradicts our intellectual ones. | Los Angeles Review of Books

“I keep thinking that I shall have no more to say and then finding some wonderfully idiotic doctrine which I can contradict.” Moral Philosopher Mary Midgley dies at 99, leaving the rest of us to continue her good fight against those who view the world through the mono-prism of science. | The New York Times

“Skeptics” are healthy for journalism, but “cynics” are not. Merrill Perlman advises us to doubt like Pyrrho, but not get ensnared in cynicism like the followers of Antisthenes. And if your name begins with “Anti,” well I guess that just about says it all. | Columbia Journalism Review

“What many postmodernists do argue is that we should be skeptical of claims of objectivity, absolute access to truth, or overarching narratives.” Scotty Hendricks calls out some of the goofs who make anti-science postmodernists seem more absurd than irrational. | big think

“In the gig economy, you’re not going to have seven employers, you’re going to have seven careers.” An in-depth look at what universities are and are not doing to encourage a workforce of creators, analyzers, problem solvers, collaborators and lifelong learners.| VICE

‘I’m doomed, but we all are.’ Edward Buchanan on the small joys of living each day as a negativist. | Aeon

“The world might be, as Ludwig Wittgenstein said, everything that is the case—but the case is bigger than it was: the number of things available for our regard has increased beyond belief.” Sven Birkerts on the art of paying attention in our age of distraction. | Aeon

“This year brings three new books in praise of wasting time: a manifesto by MIT professor Alan Lightman; a critical history by philosopher Brian O’Connor; and a memoir by essayist Patricia Hampl.” If you’re feeling industrious enough, check out a recent review of these books. | Public Books

Isaiah Berlin saw “human self-understanding… as the fundamental objective of philosophy.” Henry Hardy discusses the life and legacy of a philosopher and historian of ideas who was also a public moralist and intellectual. | Times Literary Supplement

“Forget programming—the best skill to teach children is reinvention.” Yuval Noah Harari on what we need now to survive in 2050.  | Wired

“In short, ‘solastalgia’ is a form of homesickness one gets when one is still at ‘home.'” Maybe we need a philosophical neologism to best convey the new pains we feel regarding the destruction of the planet. | Quartz

“I just don’t have a victim mentality. That’s never been my personality.” Kim Kardashian gets philosophical about sex tapes, the death of her dad, and the relationship between Kanye and Trump.| Vanity Fair

“Three quarters of a century after Germany collapsed at the end of the Second World War, and decades since Walter Kaufmann and other scholars liberated Nietzsche’s reputation from the grip of fascism, the renegade ‘philosopher with a hammer’ is being dressed in Nazi uniform once again.” The Philosopher’s Zone on the cultural misappropriation of a thinker who opposed ethno-nationalism, anti-Semitism, and would have likely slammed Alt-right philistinism in general. | The Philosopher’s Zone

Paul Levy looks back at the life and writings of Iris Murdoch, a novelist and philosopher. | The Independent

“George Orwell was one of truth’s Cassandras, but he tended to relate the rise of authoritarianism not to a dogmatic objectivity, but to the advance of relativism.” David Dwan on facts in a post-truth world. | The Guardian

Scholars from several disciplines offer their take on the ‘Grievance Studies’ hoax. | The Chronicle of Higher Education

The video game Cyberpunk 2077 wants to play with philosophy. | VGR

Skye C. Cleary, author of a book on the Existentialists and love, recommends five reads on the philosophy of love. | Five Books


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