Monday, January 05, 2015

Leiter: 2014: The Year The Philosophy Profession Went Mad

   I think this is basically right.
   Too busy to write anything about it now, but this stuff is basically why I was skeptical of the anti-Leiter jihad. I don't have any particularly pro-Leiter sentiments. I try to basically ignore the People-Magazine-like attention to the "profession" that obsesses so many. But Leiter doesn't sound to me like a particularly nice guy. OTOH, I had this vague sense that the anti-Leiter campaign was being conducted for largely political reasons, and largely by the SJW wing of the philosophy profession. Leiter's to the left of me so far as I can tell, but I had slowly come to suspect that he was considered insufficiently leftward by certain people. Not coincidentally, it started to seem as if there were a kind of Daily Nous vs. Leiter Reports aspect to the thing--and the Daily Nous seems downright nuttily/creepily SJW-friendly with some regularity.
   Such anyway were my hunches... I hope they were wrong...but I'm really starting to think they weren't...


Blogger Dark Avenger said...

Winston, this is a nuanced view of things with Leiter, but you should look through the comments if you're on the lookout for more details.

In the interest of full disclosure, I'm in the comments under my Disqus monicker Get Chutney Love.

And I'll tell you what: One of the things my mother said was that when someone is crazy, they think they're sane and that the rest of the world around them is nuts.

I don't think your sanity is at question, but I'm doubtful that you can base your contention that the profession has gone crazy based on a single blog post by an eminent professor of any sort, let alone Leiter.

I think he's a bit coo-coo for Cocoa Puffs, but, I report, you decide.

6:51 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Thanks DA, will check it out.

Of course I am not basing any claim about the current political nuttiness in the profession on any one blog post. Rather, as I said, I just have concerns. The same kind of far-left "social justice" nuttiness that's metastasized on the interwebs seems to me as if it might be infecting the philosophy profession, and places like the Daily Nous. One certainly sees some crazy SJW-ish things on there...

Anyway, suspecting that a lot of other people might be getting nutty is different than thinking that you're the only sane person there is... Anyway, remember: I'm suspicious of both Leiter and the anti-Leiter forces, just for the record...

4:23 PM  
Blogger Dark Avenger said...

For the record, I'm basing my contention he is nuts not because I claim to be a SJW, but based on his behavior, which includes threatening to file a lawsuit over a blog post that doesn't mention him or anyone else associated with Mr. Leiter by name.

Certainly, the thought of a Nietzchian philosopher threatening to sue over his reputation is pretty risible by itself, IMHO.

11:22 AM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Duly noted.

Though is Leiter a Nietzschean? He *works on* Nietzsche...but that's different of course.

12:11 PM  
Blogger Dark Avenger said...

Well, then, a Nietschean scholar, at any rate. It is possible that a scholar doesn't share all the beliefs of his/her subject, although he attributes his personal, shall we say, aggressive style to his being a native of NYC, a bit simple-minded, if you ask me.

He could also learn a lesson from Hollywood:

"Be nice to people on the way up, because you'll meet the same people on the way down." --Wilson Mizner

I think you're also giving the SJW people too much credit. From what I've seen, they could probably start a riot at a Scottish soccer match, but not much else.

4:57 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

Still haven't yet had a chance to read the link...or, well, I've had a chance but I'm right now trying to avoid almost all things that might distract me from the metric fuckton of stuff currently on my plate...but I'm eager to see it.

Yeah, screw that "I'm from NYC" excuse. I don't care all that much *why* someone is an asshole. An asshole from NYC, like an asshole from, say, Kansas, is still just an asshole.

I very much hope that you're right about the SJWs. I really, really do. In fact, I so hope that you're right that I'm going to incontinently allow myself to believe it merely on the basis of your testimony, at least for awhile.

11:48 AM  

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