March 3, 2014
Tarbet forwarded a couple of links to me about a scholar who has found hidden musical qualities in the structure of some of Plato’s dialogues. This YouTube is a short interview with the scholar, where he sketches out the basic idea:
And this link is to one of his papers in which he shows more concretely what he’s talking about, in connection to the Symposium:
February 25, 2014
Call for Applications!
If you are majoring in Philosophy, and at least a semester away from graduating, you should apply for the Brett Blanch Memorial Scholarship. This is typically an award of about $500. If you would like further details, just see a Philosophy faculty member, or stop by Main 204.
February 25, 2014
Here is a thoughtful essay by Josh Marshall at TalkingPointsMemo.com by someone who was in a graduate program in history and then decided to become a popular writer. Some relevant excerpts:
…At one point in our conversation, he laid it on the line. “You need to decide whether you’ll be satisfied with writing for an audience of two or maybe three hundred people.”
Clearly, the correct answer to this was “yes.” And as Wood said it, then and now I have the sense he thought posing it in this way would get me back on track with a focus on the scholarly community we were a part of. But hearing it so starkly, in my mind my response was something more like, “Holy Crap, no way! That’s definitely nowhere near enough people. And worse yet, I know some of those people. And I definitely don’t want to write for them.”…
…For my part, for a while I figured I’d be one of those professors who professors and also writes magazine articles and columns. But eventually I realized that would mean I would end up mediocre at both. So I scrapped that idea and committed myself to making a career as a writer. After various false starts I was blessed, through a totally fortuitous set of circumstances, to be taken under the wing of the novelist and journalist James Carroll who among other things helped me land my first job in journalism. That was in 1998. The volume of work forced me to set the dissertation aside but kept myself enrolled for the next four years before finally carving out time in 2002 and 2003 to finish it and get the degree.
February 14, 2014
Coming up on Tuesday, 5 pm – details here!
February 12, 2014
Each year, the Department of Languages, Philosophy, and Communication Studies sponsors an undergraduate colloquium. The idea is to have a mini-conference at which students present papers they’ve worked on. Often, students in the same class will band together and present their papers, or their thoughts about a topic they have found interesting. Or individual students can put together posters conveying their ideas, and hang around them to explain them to interested folks. So start thinking about what you might like to present. There are awards for best papers.
The deadline to submit a 100-word proposal of what you are planning to do is April 1. Please submit to sarah.gordon (at) usu.edu. If you have any questions, just speak with any faculty member in the department.
February 10, 2014
An interesting NYT article here. Excerpt:
And while the hardware is new, the questions are not. The assigned readings, dealing with the ethics of war, include Thucydides and Thomas Aquinas. In his first lecture, Dr. Latiff went back in time to 1139, when Pope Innocent II banned the use of that era’s cutting-edge armament, the crossbow, against Christians. He mentioned the American decisions to firebomb Dresden and drop atomic bombs on Japan in World War II. Drawing closer to his own era, he spoke of Agent Orange, the toxic defoliant used in the Vietnam War.
February 7, 2014
Brad Gregory is a USU alumnus and now Professor of History at the University of Notre Dame. He will be speaking today (Friday) from 12 to 1 in Library 101, under the title “Conflict, Community, and consumption: The Making of Modernity in the Reformation Era.” This will be a very interesting lecture which takes up the problem of maintaining community through religious revolution. Everyone is welcome!