Monthly Archives: August 2009

Should Laura Dekker be allowed to sail around the world?

What do people think about this case?  Should the Dutch have interfered with her and her parents?

Posted in Posts, Problems | 3 Comments

CFP: Hegel After Spinoza

Hegel After Spinoza: A Volume of Critical Essays
Edited by Hasana Sharp and Jason SmithCall for Papers

The names Hegel and Spinoza have come to represent two irreconcilable paths in contemporary philosophy. This opposition has taken different forms, but has its roots in mid- to late-20th century French philosophy. Althusser announced that he required a “detour” away from Hegel and through Spinoza in order to arrive at a genuinely materialist Marxism. Pierre Macherey staged a careful deconstruction of Hegel’s claim to have superseded Spinoza’s system in Hegel ou Spinoza, which concomitantly served as a defence of Spinozism against the Hegelianism dominant in France in the 1960s and ‘70s. Among the most influential articulations of this antagonism are the polemics of Deleuze celebrating the immanent and vitalist thinking of a materialist tradition beginning with Lucretius and passing through Spinoza to the present, to which he opposes the logic of totality, negativity, and contradiction found in Hegel. Spinoza, for Deleuze and others, stands for a rejection of negativity and lack as the foundation of philosophical and political thought, and as a salutary alternative to the negativity (in both the logical and existential senses) associated not only with Hegel, but with Hobbes, Freud, Sartre, Heidegger, and Lévinas as well. Feminists have likewise celebrated Spinoza as providing a joyful alternative to a tradition that emphasizes anxiety, mortality, and combat. This opposition, in its various expressions, underscores that reading Hegel has always been and remains a political act.


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McGill Visiting Fulbright Chair in the Theory and Practice of Federalism, 2010-2011

The deadline for all Canada-US visiting Fulbright Chairs has apparently been extended to September 30. The McGill Visiting Fulbright Chair in the Theory and Practice of Federalism is open to junior or senior scholars, doing empirical, normative, or theoretical work, who wish to spend a semester of or the whole of AY 2010-11 at McGill in the Department of Political Science and the Research Group on Constitutional Studies.  (I can say authoritatively that applications from theorists are welcome.)  Applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents, and must not also be Canadian citizens or permanent residents. Stipend of $CAN 25000, plus up to $CAN 1000 for in-country travel and enrichment.


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New Online Resource for Research on the Public Sphere

Here is a very, very good resource for those doing research on the public sphere:

There’s lots of Habermas (of course) and Rawls (of course) but also a whole lot in addition.  I strongly recommend this resource.

Posted in Notices | Leave a comment

At the risk of starting another discussion on libertarianism… but for the record.

Kevin asked me to post these comments which I had hoped would make it onto the Molinari web page a long time ago. They provide a short response to some replies by Jan Narveson and Roderick Long to some comments I made on a symposium at the APA last year. Whew… anyone get that?

Just in case you are confused, here is the run down. The commentary I gave focused on a collection of essays on libertarianism and anarchism edited by Tibor Machan and Roderick Long. In it, I advanced a new argument for the conclusion that libertarians should endorse some kind of welfare liberalism.

Here were the comments I made:

Several people responded. Here are Narveson’s comments:

Here are Long’s:

Here are Thomas’s:

Perhaps I should also say that I post my reply to these here only because I did not succeed in getting them on the Molinari web site and there was some discussion of the relevant argument in the commentary I posted here a while ago. This was the commentary:

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R.I.P. G.A. Cohen

A philosophical giant has passed, quite suddenly and with what seemed to be so many years ahead of him.  How incredibly sad.  What a loss.

Posted in Notices | 5 Comments