Misconceptions on philosophy I

images

This post is inspired by many questions I am asked daily on philosophy in general and on philosophers in particular. As a philosophy teacher, it is my duty to address misconceptions about this field and to untangle philosophy from other disciplines that falsely want to use it for higher purposes.

What are the main encountered confusions?

Let’s start with definitions since philosophy is the science of definitions and it always starts with defining and describing the object of study.

Philosophy:

You might hear people say: “My philosophy of a workout/life/career/love etc. is this and this”. The right word to be used in this is “perspective” which is an interpretation based upon one’s experience. While philosophy will create representations and perspectives, it is not per se a perspective. Philosophy is the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality, and existence, especially when considered as an academic discipline. In other words, philosophy creates concepts. After figuring out what is the fundamental nature of all the aforementioned, then we can have a perspective on life, on fitness, on love, on career etc.

Concept:

Design, architecture, advertising etc. use the word concept as an idea about their product. This is misuse of the word concept. A concept is not a simple theoretical idea to be concretely realized in a tangible product. For Deleuze, concepts are not identity conditions or propositions, but metaphysical constructions that define a range of thinking, such as Plato’s ideas, Descartes’s cogito, or Kant’s doctrine of the faculties. A philosophical concept “posits itself and its object at the same time as it is created.” So there is a concept of an idea, as the basis and the structure of the idea, the ontology of it. To go back to the confusion mentioned before, there is a concept of the idea which will be realized in a product. A concept is a meta-idea.

Philosophy vs. psychology:

While philosophy was the first to study consciousness and human’s mind, and was and still a type of therapy as I explained it shortly on this post: Therapy through philosophy. a short explanation. However, philosophy and psychology can’t be swapped. Psychology is the study of the mind and behavior, according to the American Psychological Association. It is the study of the mind, how it works, and how it affects behavior. Psychologists and psychiatrists work together to help people with mental health conditions, but they are not quite the same. Psychology and philosophy in its practical branch are both therapies focusing on a patient; philosophy in its broader branches doesn’t deal with individuals but with concepts.

I hope I cleared out some confusions around philosophy as an academic discipline. More posts will be written about this subject, because misconceptions like these drive me nuts!

49 thoughts on “Misconceptions on philosophy I”

  1. So the concept of “being driven nuts by misconception” is a philosophical question but becomes a study of psychology when personalized, as in adding the word you — “YOU are driven nuts by misconception” — ???

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Sorry May-Lynn, my bad — I was only using your quote as an example in attempting to properly combine the use of the words, concept, philosophy and psychology correctly. More looking for verification from you that I used the words properly in understanding as per their definitions.

        So using say “afraid of large gatherings” instead. I’m asking does the concept of this statement fall under philosophy? And if it were “I” — in “I am afraid of large gatherings” — does this now make it fall under the study of psychology? My interpretations a little off perhaps?

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Lol without reading my long winded reply on the other post of yours, the summary is:

    Philosophy as a science of definition, is really just telling us your philosophy of philosophy.

    You are avoiding what philosophy actually is by telling us your philosophy of philosophy.

    You’re giving us a definition of philosophy like anyone would give a definition for any other discipline.

    But we don’t say I’m giving you my biology of biology, or my computer science of computer science, or my science of science, for that matter.

    What we say is my philosophy of science. My philosophy of biology.

    so to say that philosophy is the science of a definition is really just saying I am that I am. It’s an identity. It’s like saying a car is a car.

    It sounds like you’re telling us what philosophy is, but really you’re just reiterating your philosophy of philosophy.

    I think that’s why I think philosophy should be understood as a more foundational category. It’s not just another category amongst a bunch of categories, not merely just one discipline I midst a number of disciplines. For the reason I just gave above. Ie. We don’t say “here is my computer science of philosophy“, unless what we mean by that is “here is my philosophy of computer science of philosophy”.

    And so I continue to ask what really is going on here? What is being avoided in understanding that the kind of definition you give us of philosophy is getting us somewhere philosophically?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. — and I’d like to comment on your suggestion that psychology is different than philosophy.

      Yes, in the manner that I just said above, there is the discipline of psychology and then there is the discipline of philosophy.

      But here I could ask what is the psychology of philosophy? I could talk about a psychology of philosophy, well, I could talk about a philosophy of psychology.

      What I am getting at though with having philosophy being a more foundational category is that we need to consider how her philosophy avoids the actuality of its situation that it posits through reason.

      If I was to talk about a subject of philosophy, then I get to pretty much say anything I want so long as it has a certain amount of sense. And we find at least in the 20th century, that pretty much anything that has cents in large part we are justified in associating that with a truth of a subject, or a world, or it’s subjective truth etc.

      But what we find when we consider the actuality of the situation in which philosophy occurs, which is to say, the actuality of the situation in which reason arises systematically, we have to realize what psychology is also telling us.

      Philosophy would like to exclude its conclusions of reason such that it is able to override any other discipline. And I mean this in the exact opposite as I talk about in the previous reply.

      It is opposite because philosophy as a real item which arises from a centralized thinking subject justifies itself essentially.

      I don’t have to make a long winded argument to see how such reason, as evidenced by the philosophy at least since Kant, Has been involved with an agenda of colonialization and oppression. We see the problem of this general human category we call “reason“, at least in the Western tradition, arise with Heidegger around the world wars of the 20 century.

      The problem arises because it leads to systemic oppression. The difficult choice that Heidegger was faced with was exactly that: Should I believe the reasoning that I have made which seems so sound? should I act authentically and have faith in this “perfect” reason, so to speak, where I see a common Thread moving in an Hegelian type of history up to Dasien? Or do I believe the polemic which seems to be a rising around it like a shadow? This shadow we know now, is the ethical reality of “everyone else”. Heidegger talks about this in a slightly different way and uses different terms; I can’t remember exactly how he put it right now though.

      This is a psychological problem. With the coincidence of Heidegger, the pure reason, dasien, Hegelian coincidence and what a rose in the 20th century, What happens is that psychology asserts itself against the “pure reason”.

      What we understand now is that what I feel, what I believe as a sort of justified essential self, this thinking person that uses reason to go out into the world and do things, does not arise in a vacuum. In fact it is not half in and then half out.

      D and G Try to stick to some Freudian kind of philosophy/psychology to allow for the continued “out”, which is the justification of reason to do what it wants, to believe the sense that it makes is making sense ethically for everyone.

      But after the 1960s and 1970s and 80s, we realize that this does not happen. This is what the big deal was in the 90s and early 2000s about “the end of philosophy”, the end of history”. Because philosophy, as some sort of discipline amongst other disciplines, which strategically pulls itself out of relation to assert itself and justify it self as having communion with Something transcendent to ideology, then strategically again insert itself back into a menagerie of categories— this is what Kierkegaard calls “discursive gymnastics”. It is in authentic because it denies particular things that does not equate to its “reasoning”. It incorporates what makes sense to its reason and it argues away what does not make sense to its reason.

      This is what D and G whole philosophy describes an inscribed. This is why they called them selves “metaphysicians”: Because they had to go all-in To attempt to describe why the problem that arrived with Heidegger, and even Wittgenstein, Persist despite the obvious failure ethically.

      D and G that’s describe this situation

      Liked by 2 people

      1. … they describe the situation that must be true given that no one is understanding the problem. They just take the apparent denial, the boundaries which marks off what is being denied and they describe that whole situation. And we see this most clearly in how people academics and general thinkers here and there will identify themselves as “postmodern thinkers”. The fact that they have identified themselves to this category shows that they are not understanding the issue that the post modern writers were talking about, they do not see the problem. And then we see this most vehemently arise With the Sokal hoax, and the algorithm “the postmodern generator”. Here we are showing people the problem that arose 100 years ago, showing it to people right in our faces, and people still refuse to understand the issue, and they continue on in their way anyways.

        This type of being represents an idealism, whether we base it in Eminence or transcendence, — and regardless how we to find those terms—/ cannot hold under philosophical scrutiny unless philosophy takes the yolk up of Continuing to deny the ethical incongruency: And this situation is exactly Lyotard describes as “the postmodern condition”.

        The reason why now psychology must mix with philosophy is because there is not a neutral reason that we are able to attain when we consider what is aparent around us. And this is to say that we do not arise out of context; the context is racism, the context is the ideological social reality of contained individuals. Philosophy is that not excluded from the ideological bias just because it defines a category, that it calls “reason” just supposed to be able to consider these things neutrally or objectively. And in fact, this is what philosophy typically wants to argue, namely, that people have an ability to consider things objectively and neutrally oh I heard the movie.

        Reason is does not exclude us from this psychology; on the contrary philosophical reason tends to consolidate and justify that I am neutral, that I am able to consider things neutrally and make decisions from that point of neutrality. There is no “common reason”.

        These are the issues that the philosophers of the 90s in the 2000s have taken up Badiou, Laruelle, Zizek. They realized the problem, and address it head on.

        So, that’s my little rebuttal against the segregation and Equivocation of disciplines. Yes and no. We can no longer sit back and say “ here’s an argument, yes OR no”, because philosophically speaking, such a method misses a crucial point philosophically.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yes you are right because you know what you are talking about and I am not against this marriage of disciplines to address problems.

        What my post was about is the mainstream usage of the words philosophy and concept.

        Liked by 3 people

      3. Yes because philosophy is not only about transcendence. Philosophy of immanence has been more accurate and less harmful to what politics have made of philosophy. Nazism related to Nietzsche but Nietzsche is totally the opposite of nazism. Transcendental philosophy was badly manoeuvred by politics.

        Liked by 2 people

      4. I call thiis (these) Quetions Weve been talking about “the hard question of consciousness”. The famous one (that everyone likes to site) I call “the difficult question” because he only offers us a difficult question. I offer the hard question Becuase it concerns the substance, concreteness, ridged, firm, dense, object, solid, definite, sure, injurious…aspect of consciousness that philosophers regularly will not ask or attempt to answer. Typically philosophers just use discourse to make ourselves correct. Philosophers regularly just want to be right. I refer to the Hard question Becuase it only has one answer which is exceedingly difficult to reconcile to most philosopher’s way of coming upon reality Becuase it is Hard, it is fixed. It forms the substance that philosophers most often avoid for the sake of arguing themselves thier righteousness. As well, it forms the sure basis of change.

        So the next form of the question might be:
        If nothing arises outside of discourse, how, in what manner, do you discern what defines discourse and what is discourse itself?

        If discourse Is just how we make models of the universe for ourselves, (human thinking) such that there are things which arise outside of discourse (by that definition) then is this function existing? Or does itself arise outside of discourse as well (and outside of the existing universe) and how are we able to discern the existence of the function from what it functions upon or for?

        These are hard questions of consciousness, I think, not merely difficult.

        Liked by 2 people

      5. How can something arise from outside the universe?
        Again, as humans, discourse is everything. It is the parameter or the grid through which we know and live and interact and evolve. Perception, discourse and consciousness come together. There is nothing outside of them at least for humans. And they are all possible thanks to the human brain.

        Liked by 2 people

      6. What was maneuvered by politics? What exactly? Was/is it an idea which arises outside of discourse ? Does this idea which does not get it become maneuvered exist in-itself? How are you able to discern this ‘non-manipulated’ idea from one which has been commandeered for a purpose not original to it?

        Liked by 2 people

      7. Again, and I am done repeating the same idea: for humans, nothing is outside of discourse; if you disagree, give me a tangible example of something outside of discourse.
        And I was talking about philosophy in general and philosophers theories in particular and what politicians made of them.

        It is not philosophers who wanted colonialism but politicians justified it by maneuvering and manipulating some philosophical ideas. Lenin did this with Marx, Hitler did it with Nietzsche and so on.
        You can discern the original idea from the manipulated one by reading philosophers books.
        And an idea doesn’t exist in itself. If it is not said nor written nor heard, it doesn’t exist.

        Liked by 1 person

      8. I would argue that the white cops who are killing black people do not mean to kill them. And yet more black and people of color by far are killed and imprisoned than white people.

        Intension is no longer sufficient to justify reason. Neither vice versa.


        Ok. I agree. Nothing exists outside of discourse. I do not disagree with you.

        So, I am asking you then, does what is “not human” arise outside of discourse ?

        I am asking you about what actually occurs, not really what meaning is possible.

        Because, it sounds to me like you’re saying two things, like you’re bouncing back-and-forth between two different positions depending on what question I ask you.

        Everything arises in discourse; if there is nothing outside of discourse, then how is it possible that I can also say that this only happens for humans . what about rocks? Or cheetahs?

        This is why I speak of logistics: everything is arising only to human beings and their use of discourse, then how can I possibly know that it isn’t also arising for cheetahs, except in that I am denying the fact that everything arises in discourse ?

        Either everything is rising in discourse, or it is not.

        Is non sequitur to say it is only that way for humans, because then obviously I must be referring to something that is not discursive .

        If everything is discursive, The only way that I am able to know anything at all is through discourse, then how is it possible for me to know that only humans do this?

        Liked by 2 people

      9. Ok I get it but how you as a human can know what;s happening to rocks in a non discursive way? You need to be a rock to “know” it if knowledge can be extended to other species.
        To humans, everything arises in discourse. To know if it arises differently to other species, that’s what science is trying to do or understand. Yet again, science is using discourse to do all this. Again my friend, it is a tautology.

        Liked by 1 person

      10. The dialectical conclusion must admit that humans are not unique in thier beingness. Yet, I’d say, humans like other objects, are able to consolidate their own identity such that other arises distinct and non-dialectical as foreign/alien other, or in our cAse, as the only thing that has or is capable of discourse.

        Liked by 2 people

      11. Becuase, like you said: are not everything that I know contained in discourse? Is it truly and only the mind which ‘causes’ discourse ?

        How do you know that? Logistically, what is occurring in knowing the mind-thought correlation?

        Liked by 2 people

      12. The mind = thoughts.
        There is no such a thing called the mind located somewhere. It is a process of thinking, made by thoughts which are representations of what is perceived.
        Representations and thoughts will not exist without words. They would be instinctive impressions and that’s it.
        On a phenomenological level, consciousness as in perception, the outside world and words come together.

        Liked by 2 people

      13. Humans are able to consolidate identity. But one of the issues, I’d say, Is that most human beings see this ability as a necessity, as if it is not merely an ability but it is the only manner that can possibly be.

        Harmon uses Heidegger‘s tool being to kind of refer to this aspect. Well, Heidegger I think says something very similar, but Harmon takes it the next step.

        As an analogy, I would say that human beings take this ability to consolidate identity to be necessarily unitive and unimpeachable, unchangeable, not to be disrupted. Like the analogy, a hammer. Most people with reference to their humanity, with reference to everything that we typically understand as humanity as opposed to everything else, would say that the hammer can only and must only be used to pound nails into wood.

        But actually the hammer could be an infinite number of things. Just as this ability of beings to consolidate identity Is just an ability. Just as the hammer has an ability to hammer in nails, but it can do and thus be so much more. Indeed it is a hammer and its main function could be said to be to hammer and nails, cosmologically and etiologicslly speaking, the hammer was created to hammer and nails. But once we realize that this identity which we take is so common and normal and regular in real really has nothing to do with the hammer Ness, then we find it has its own being and does a number of things, and indeed asks us to use it in ways that it sees fit, and to have a relationship with it, to be involved with it, as indeed a being like us. I’d say.

        But, if we could bring in Jung. Young tells us that we have to be careful in this kind of relationship, and he goes on to define various mental disorders in the context of going too far either way, and the process of individuation is indeed going to far one way and then retreating back into the other way and then going to far the other way until finally all the rough edges are worn down .

        Liked by 2 people

      14. The hammer is a tool and a tool can be used for number of functions. Hannah Arendt said that we build our identity upon relationships with things and tools, cities and everything humanity built.

        While this can be true on many levels, I like Jung’s caution on individuation taken on 1 direction and not the other.

        Liked by 2 people

      15. Function …yeah. Ok. Yes. Along one route if knowing a hammer can have many functions.

        I am using an analogy to suggest a different route upon things, thus to say that the human being as the only being that thinks and uses discourse is the same as viewing a hammer as a thing which only drives nails.

        Most human beings would say that there is this being called a hammer and that we are using our intellect to devise different ways of using that being that we call hammer.

        I am saying that me and the hammer have a relationship, and the hammer is communicating with me about its being and what it wants to do in the situation presented between us.

        Just like the rock. Just like the fence, or the grass, or the oxygen in the air, or my depression, or my suicidal thoughts.

        These are all things that exist in the universe.

        The consolidation of identity, I am suggesting, is an ability of consciousness. It is one ability of consciousness to think it self as central, to notice thoughts as attached to a brain, to my body, I go out and I intentionally do things to neutral objects out there that have no being similar to mine. Most people take this Abilityly thing that matters to being human, as distinguished from all: The thing that is a human being tends to want to consolidate identity.

        But so do rocks, and flowers, and hydrogen Adams, and amigos, and Clark’s, and fulcrums, and weather fronts, and lightning bolts.

        Liked by 1 person

      16. Here we go back to the underlying problem between empiricists and rationalists:
        Do we consolidate identity like all being do, instinctively?
        Or are we the ones to consolidate it because we have a mind and we are not determined by instincts?

        Like

    1. ….or, to be consistent with your post here:
      Where does consciousness, thought, and behavior exist?

      DO they arise outside of discourse, outside of context, or is everything discursive, that is are they determined in context?

      Then: To what to the terms refer?

      To more discourse, or to something in-itself?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We know all you mentioned through discourse. Maybe discourse can’t tell all, maybe it created a delusion etc.. Therefore, wherever discourse refers to is always a discourse related thing. Even your questions about discourse referring to something that is outside of it, is a discourse in itself. In logic, this statement is called a tautology.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I am not disagreeing with you. But I am trying to Find out just how thorough your convictions are.

        You say that everything is discourse, but nothing arises out of discourse, and then you say oh who knows maybe it could be something that we haven’t come across yet, I would have to refer you back to a statement that you said to me, and say all these notions that you’re speculating about what could arise outside of discourse is ultimately discursive.

        So I guess I’m trying to find out if you’re just saying that everything arises in discourse because it seems like a nice idea, or if that’s actually your experience. If indeed nothing at all ever under any sort of condition arises outside of discourse.

        But it seems to me from your answers that you want to head your bets. Do you want to say everything is just course and then have some exclusions.

        I am asking how you reconcile that contradiction.

        I know how I resolve that contradiction. But it seems in a regular action when I talk about how I resolve that contradiction, it seems to me that you go back-and-forth again, wanting to have your cake and eat it too, so to speak.

        ??

        And: psychologically. If I get upset or flustered or impatient while I am doing philosophy, then I would have to refer the reasoning to psychology until the anxiety and reactive defenses calm. Just saying.

        Because, I would think “I wonder why Lance keeps asking me the same question over and over again?”

        You think I’m being obstinate? Do you think that I’m trying to prove you wrong? Do you think that I’m trying to prove to you that I am right? You think I’m just being an asshole? Do you think I’m stupid?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. My friend,
        I am not upset or anything, not even close to that. And your last questions are your assumptions not mine. They didn’t even cross my mind.

        I am just trying to take the problem from 2 different angles that you see as contradictory and I would rather call dialectical.

        Nothing arises outside of discourse because discourse makes our daily reality in all its layers. It made understand and evolve. When we stumble upon something outside of discourse, we will make it discursive. That’s the ability of the human mind!

        Back in the past, many phenomena couldn’t be named and were considered, like you say, outside of discourse. Fast forward, they were named and made their way into being discursive.

        The idea, “nothing arises outside of discourse” has 2 layers:
        1- discourse is our spectrum to live, interact, think, evolve etc…
        2- discourse is always in expansion, dealing with the new phenomena every time.

        These 2 ideas are in a sort of a hegelian dialectic.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. But likewise I might ask you When, or really where in this context, does the past occur?

        When you speak of “back in the past“, to what are you really referring to?

        Liked by 1 person

  3. You’ve really explained it well. I have a small question. I understand the therapeutic value of philosophy on a larger scale, away from the individual. Are there are studies which quantify the therapy and healing effects of particular philosophies? Can you give me some pointers please?
    Thanks a lot

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your interesting comment and questions. yes there are.
      Here on WP; The philosophical hack.
      And if you want a broader idea: follow on twitter: @apaphilosophy
      it is the american philosophical association

      Like

  4. To be honest, I disagree with you on several points, at least the two I’ll be dealing with here.

    1/ The main difference between philosophy and psychology remains out of your discussion, and it is that psychology being a positive science it is empirical throughout, whereas there is no such thing as a philosophy empirical throughout.

    2/ “Philosophy is the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality, and existence, especially when considered as an academic discipline.” True as far as the first part of the sentence is concerned, extremely dubious as to the rest.

    As a matter of fact, the expression ,,Universitätsphilosophie” (university philosophy) reminds us that there is no congenial bond between the two. True enough, as early as the Antiquity philosophers taught at so-called Schools: Plato’s Academia, Aristotle’s Lyceum, the Stoics’ Portico… Yet at the same time, since Socrates they criticized the Sophists’ practice of having their teachings financially compensated. Which, I assume, means that a philosopher in, say, the Academia would not be paid. University professors being paid, they are today’s Sophists. And the other distinction made by Schopenhauer, and which overlaps the former, between those who live for philosophy and those who live of philosophy, stands. And as was to be expected from these facts, Schopenhauer is hardly considered a philosopher by university “philosophers.” — All this bears no relation to your own personal situation, and I believe you are above taking my views as being personal regarding this situation of yours. Kant was a professor too. (Schopenhauer explains that Kant could be the two, a professor and a philosopher at the same time, due to the ruling of an enlighened monarch in Prussia; and by this he was not meaning that in a democracy, then, university teachings would be free by virtue of a democratic constitution.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree with a lot what you write on here but there are some points I would argue on:

      1- Psychology is not a positive science. It is an interpretation based on empirical observations. Psychology is no where near what is called “exact science” because psychology is the study of the human psyche and this is its strength.

      2- I did say this to distinguish the broader usage of the word philosophy and philosophy as the discipline to question existence and human conditions and so on.

      As for philosophers being the new sophists? No, because sophists taught rhetoric to people who desired to be public figures. They taught their students to be orators and to manipulate masses. Philosophers don’t do that. Besides, Schopenhauer was not popular back then in Germany whose philosopher’s role model was Hegel.
      Now I do agree with you that a philosophy teacher and a philosopher are not the same. As much as a maths teacher is not necessarily a mathematician or the next Reimann.
      Thank you for reading and commenting. Maybe I should’ve been more clear in my post!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The clarity of your post was commendable, as well as that of your reply to my remarks.

        I may agree that psychology is not quite on par with physics, but this is only on a somewhat superficial level, given, at the core, the incompleteness of all empirical knowledge, its incrementality. As empirical sciences, both physics and psychology suffer from the same defect, the defect of being incremental knowledge providing at best an ,,analogon” of certainty. Predictions based on exact sciences are in fact much more limited than usually acknowledged. True, when you start your car, you know it will go at your command, and all this is due to scientific predictions upon which the apparatus is built up; yet this is all we can do with exact science: to make technique out of it, that is, to harness forces in a predictable way — until the prediction is contradicted (black swans). It happens from time to time that a powder magazine explodes for no apparent reason, because of the particles’ Brownian movements which cannot be detected at the present stage of our technique; so these explosions are unpredictable, yet we are closing our eyes on the danger on which we stand. In the future we will find a way to predict these movements, but then there will still be some other events that escape our knowledge, ad infinitum, so progress amounts to nothing, it is only a change in conditions, not a progress in the true sense of the word, and that is true for the whole empirical field. In this context psychology is no different, and only ethical considerations have (seemingly) prevented us so far from designing apparata to predict and control human behavior based on the empirical knowledge of our psyche. Such apparata would, I believe, work as satisfactorily as a car does (only, we would have to deal with casualties there too, as we are dealing with road casualties).

        2 – I said philosophy professors could be talked of as the new sophists, not philosophers per se. When universities and schools are not free from all influences, these professors are sophists not only because they hold a remunerated tenure but also because they make believe philosophy is what the government, the authorities, the “Prince,” or any other interest-holding influencer says it is.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I do agree with you on the ethical urgent need to rethink the use of machines and technology that gave science the power it has today. And I do agree also on the blessing that so far there is no machine which can control the mind. Artificial Intelligence is a big issue and we all need to reflect upon it to minimize the impact of it on freedom especially.

        Concerning your 2nd point, there might be philosophy professors out there who are like you describe them but not all of them. I have known some who really struggled in order not to become a sophist, including me.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. If we look at the history of relationships between university and philosophy beyond the controversy involving Greek philosophers and sophists, we see that universities were created in the middle ages and that the philosophy taught in these institutions then was scholasticism, as the ”ancilla” of theology. Modern philosophy developed against scholastics (Hobbes et al) and from outside the university. As far as modern philosophy is concerned, the connexion with university is therefore not foundational, but a late evolution, the turning point of which is Hegelianism. Yet the relationship remains shaky at best. To take only a couple of examples, Nietzsche left the university at an early stage in life as an uncongenial environment, and Sartre, although his curriculum was the via regia to holding a tenure at university, chose quite another path (namely, a literary career and journalism), leaving no doubt, in a couple of his novels, as to the paramount existential importance of this choice. Conversely, Heidegger made a brave attempt at justifiying the position of tenured professor for a philosopher, namely, that “teaching is the best way to learn.” And I already talked about Kant. Kant and, perhaps, Heidegger are the reason why the two distinctions, that is, between ,,Universitätsphilosophie” and… another philosophy, and between those who live of philosophy and those who live for philosophy, overlap greatly but not quite perfectly. Thank you for your attention.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s