Being Cool Being cool is something everyone aspires to be, but no one seems to know what it is. Also: is aspiring to be cool consistent with being cool? It isn’t the same as being good or socially desirable or beautiful, though elements of those qualities permeate coolness. It is an odd […]
About Colin McGinn
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Personal Pronouns It has often been observed that there is something funny about “I” referentially speaking yet we use it all the time. I would say that we don’t know what we are referring to: we don’t know what the self is. This is an old story: philosophers have had a difficult time […]
Tennis Sublime I can’t let what happened at the US Open this year pass without comment. First we had the transcendent victory of Emma Racunadu over her equally transcendent rival Leyla Fernandez. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite so sublime in sports: the skill, the style, and the determination. Just look at […]
I do sometimes wonder whether the appalling degradation in American culture, morality, and intelligence that we have winessed in the last twenty years (including in universities) was caused by the horrific events of 9/11. At the time I feared that the American reaction to these events might exceed in harmfulness the events in question. Can […]
Is Shape Physical? Shape is included on the traditional list of primary qualities, but that doesn’t settle the question of whether it is physical. Indeed the question is seldom raised: is the shape of an object a physical property of it? Nor is it an easy question to answer—largely because of […]
Read it and weep!
Social Interactions What is the nature of a social interaction? The subjects interacting have their own nature, but what about the interaction itself? It will no doubt reflect the nature of the interacting subjects, but it may be expected to have a nature of its own. There have been varying views of […]
I happened to be watching a repeat of SNL last night and was struck again by a sketch about cancel culture. A preening pair, woman and man, were congratulating themselves on their activities in canceling young children. The kids were aged from 3 to 5 and the pair were relishing their destruction of the future […]