Month: March 2018

Heidegger and his Politics at Philosophy Now

A nice round-up of Heidegger scholars on what to make of The Black Notebooks and the relation of his politics to his fundamental ontology. Each thinker contributed but a paragraph or two and gets straight to the point. Contributors include Iain Thomson, Babette Babich, and Jack Caputo.

African Philosophy–without gaps

Chike Jeffers (Halifax) looks to be starting off quite a comprehensive set of podcasts on Africana philosophy. It’s ecumenical (seemingly not slanted to Francophone or Anglophone Africa, or any so-called analytic ordinary language/hermeneutic sides) and it takes up the great controversies within that “area” of philosophy. It starts off April 1st. Here are the planned episodes (interviews will also be made) for the first part of the series. I really look forward to listening:

Part One: Locating and Debating Precolonial African Philosophy

Introducing Africana Philosophy

Prehistoric Africa

Philosophy in Ancient Mesopotamia [as context for Egypt]

Philosophy in Ancient Egypt

Moral and Political Philosophy in Egyptian “Instructions”

Philosophy in Egyptian Narratives and Dialogues

Early Philosophy in Ethiopia

Zera Yacob and Walda Heywat

Islamic Philosophy in Sub-Saharan Africa

Philosophy in African Oral Traditions

African Philosophy of Time

God in African Philosophy

African Philosophy of the Person

Communalism in African Ethics and Politics

Gender in African Tradition

Knowledge and Destiny in African Philosophy

African Philosophy’s Emergence in Academia

The Reaction Against Ethnophilosophy

Sage Philosophy

Beyond the Reaction

Part Two will cover “Slavery and the Creation of Diasporic African Philosophy”

Part Three will cover “Africana Philosophical Thought in the 20th Century and Beyond”


Stuart Elden on the last volume of Foucault’s History of Sexuality

As usual, he’s super quick with an excellent overview and reading of a new Foucault publication, Les aveux de la chair, which he reviews at Theory, Culture and SocietyHe’s right that the prose style is, put nicely, less polemical and more austere than the first volume (which is why the first volume is always taught over the second and third volumes). But it’s not dry reading in terms of what is taken up (virginity, etc.) but is close in style to Volume 3 (Volume 2, I think, makes extensive claims that I would critique, but surpasses 3 and 4 in terms of readability). Stuart notes:

With the publication of Les aveux de la chair we are entering a new period of Foucault’s posthumous reception. A new team of editors has been working on a number of volumes of lectures from the 1950s and 1960s, when Foucault taught in Lille, Clermont-Ferrand, Tunisia and Vincennes. These are likely to add much to our understanding of Foucault’s work in those decades, even if the documentary record is less complete – only some of his courses are preserved, and there are no recordings to supplement the written word. The Vrin series ‘Philosophie du present/Foucault inédit’, edited by Fruchaud and Daniele Lorenzini continues to present new material. It began with critical French editions of texts already available in various forms in English, but is now moving to lectures, courses and other materials which had not previously been published at all. These include Foucault’s lectures in Toronto, Dire vrai sur soi-même, and courses from Brazil, New York and elsewhere are in process. It is possible that La chair et le corps, and other material on sexuality from the mid-late 1970s, might be published in some form. A still earlier text, Foucault’s master’s thesis on Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit, long thought lost, has recently been discovered and is available to researchers in Paris. Now Les aveux de la chair has been published, it seems yet more texts might be edited for publication.

David Allison Memorial at Stony Brook University

This week there is a memorial for the work and life of David Allison at SBU. I had David as an undergraduate and he was something of a legend with students even as he taught these huge seminar rooms on existentialism: he’d be teaching Camus and, like him, lighting up cigarette after cigarette. In the hallways of Stony Brook, he was always approachable (even if at that time he was still wont to wear an ascot). I took courses with him on Descartes and, of course, Nietzsche, and his Nietzsche was one of the few things I didn’t have to re- or un-learn when a postgraduate. His contributions early on with is his 1972 (that early!) work on Derrida on Husserl to all of his later work on Nietzsche and other figures made an impact on so many. Here is the program if you are in the NY area:

DAVID ALLISON: A COLLECTIVE COMMEMORATION: March 29, 2018; 214 Harriman Hall, Stony Brook University

1:30 – 2:00 Welcome: Robert Crease, chair of philosophy; Ed Casey, co-ordinator

2:00 – 2:30 Alfonso Lingis: “Chance”

2:30 – 3:00  Babette Babich, Fordham University, “Stealing Horses: David Allison as Philosopher”

3:00 – 3:20 Tim Hyde, London, England, “Performative Contradictions”

3:20 – 3:40 Brian Schroeder, University of Rochester, “Imagination and Simulacra.”

3:40 – 4:00 Karmen McKendrick, Le Moyne College, “Generous Ironies”

4:00 – 4:30  INTERLUDE: includes a visit to David Allison’s former office to view the remarkable painted portraits of continental philosophers bedecking the walls


5:00 – 5:15 Malek Moazzam-Doulat, Occidental College, “All This Happens Each and Every Moment

5:15 – 6:30 Personal Testimonials from colleagues, friends, and former students: prepared as well as spontaneous

6:30 – 7:15 Wine and Cheese Reception (in room 214)