Disciplinary Tribalism or Slice and Dice?

A recent article in the Chronicle of Higher Education by a historian suggests that on the whole thinkers like Hegel, Freud and Marx are no longer being taught, and if they are being taught it is only outside of each thinkers discipline.  So the broad claim is that Hegel, for the most part, is not taught in philosophy departments, Freud is barely spoken of in psychology departments and Marx won’t be found in any course offerings through the economics department. The author of the article, Russell Jacoby, suggests

The divorce between informed opinion and academic wisdom could not be more pointed. If educated individuals were asked to name leading historical thinkers in psychology, philosophy, and economics, surely Freud, Hegel, and Marx would figure high on the list. Yet they have vanished from their home disciplines. How can this be?  A single proposition can hardly explain the fate of several thinkers across several fields. However, general trends can inform separate disciplines. For starters, the ruthlessly anti- or nonhistorical orientation that informs contemporary academe encourages shelving past geniuses. Continue reading

Friday: Strategies of Complete Avoidance

It’s Friday and I’m avoiding grading some essays.  So here’s some required reading for you. First, a great newish group blog with Nick from Accursed Share, Taylor from Fractal Ontology and Naught Thought called Speculative Heresy that has served only to distract me this morning, but in the best way possible:

Speculative Heresy: (in their own words)

A website devoted to the exploration and discussion of the speculative heresies surrounding non-philosophy, speculative realism and transcendental materialism. Along with original commentary on the issues of speculative realism, we also aim to provide a central place from which to keep track of the evolving English speculative realist community. This includes conferences, articles, books, programs, and CFPs, along with any other notable events. If you have a relevant event which you would like to be featured on this blog, or want to reach us for any other reason, feel free to email us at: speculativeheresy [at] gmail.com.

As I’m neither much of a transcdental materialist or a speculative realist, I’ve been reading the posts on Laruelle with some interest because I have this suspicion that his Non-Philosophy verges either on nonsense or brilliance, but my reaction is always the same: “like, ok dude, take another bong hit.”  Speaking of bong hits, Carl over at Dead Voles has an interesting post called “What’s Left of Philosophy?”  and Kelty’s linked post on Savage Minds is worth checking out as well, if only for the ongoing cabaret of disciplinary boundaries the comments following the post continually reinact.  Continue reading