This is to announce that I just published a novel, Bad Patches, on Amazon. It can be bought and dowloaded on Kindle and Mac computers for $3.99. I’m interested to see how this mode of publication will work.
The Last Entry
I wrote that essay about atheism after taking part in a panel discussion about religion at CUNY in December 2009. I am always being asked why I’m an atheist and not an agnostic, as if I were some sort of dogmatist. Instead of explaining it over and over again, I thought it would be useful […]
Why I am an Atheist
What is the state of belief of an atheist? An atheist is often defined as someone who does not believe in God. It is quite true that an atheist does not believe in God, but that is insufficient to define the state of belief of an atheist. A tree or a rock or a lizard […]
I’ve realized I have a problem with writing this blog, apart from lack of time and a general aversion to the genre. What should I write about? The natural impulse is to write about what I’m thinking about, what I’m working on. But there are two reasons against this: (i) I don’t want to write […]
Philosophy, Melanie and Me
It had been dawning on me that it was a defect in my tennis game that I wasn’t getting to the ball early enough, in time to set up properly and hit with control (the strokes themselves were okay). Watching Melanie Oudin play brought this home to me: she uses her feet to fine-tune her […]
I’m just writing this now to signal my return and test my new site. I just finished the semester, having spent much of it teaching philosophy of sport and tennis (“tennis” here does not come within the scope of “philosophy”–I was teaching my students how to play tennis, not philosophize about it).
Bush, Obama: sport, language
Our new president has literary and athletic skills. Not only can he write and speak eloquently and grammatically (his inauguration speech was meticulously crafted); he is also a fluent mover on the basketball court, with good coordination and ball sense. His predecessor was notoriously clumsy around language; he spoke as if language were a disease […]
Who Rules America?
Most Americans have no trouble believing that God exists, but they are uncertain about whether an American ruling class exists. They seem to think the idea of a ruling class is restricted to European aristocracies of yore and assorted eastern potentates of today. InThe American Ruling Class Lewis Lapham takes a wry trip across America, ostensibly […]
Sanitation (philosophy of)
I’ve just finished reading Rose George’s The Big Necessity, about toilets and human waste (euphemism alert!)–as part of my interest in the emotion of disgust. I’d strongly recommend Aurel Kolnai’s monograph “On Disgust” as a philosophical treatment of the subject; it contains some excellent phenomenological work with some important conceptual distinctions (far better than most of what passes […]