I’m proud to report that one of our students has now been offered an assistant professorship in philosophy at Sacred Heart University in Connecticut. Anna Vaughn graduated from USU in 2001 in philosophy and literary studies, and went on to the University of Utah to complete a dissertation (on the Molyneux problem) under Lex Newman. I’m doubly proud since she is the first of my students to land an assistant professorship in philosophy! Congratulations, Anna!
They can be found here on this pdf, along with enticing descriptions!
Students in my classes are regularly subjected to Daniel Dennett’s views of consciousness and evolution. Here is a very recent and interesting article in The New Yorker about him. It sort of glows like a hagiography, but the man is undeniably interesting. An excerpt:
On a sunny morning this past December, fresh snow surrounded the house; where the lawn met the water, a Hobie sailboat lay awaiting spring. Dennett entered the sunlit kitchen and, using a special, broad-tined fork, carefully split an English muffin. After eating it with jam, he entered his study, a circular room on the ground floor decorated with sailboat keels of different shapes. A close friend and Little Deer Isle visitor, the philosopher and psychologist Nicholas Humphrey, had e-mailed a draft of an article for Dennett to review. The two men are similar—Humphrey helped discover blindsight, studied apes with Dian Fossey, and was, for a year, the editor of Granta—but they differ on certain points in the philosophy of consciousness. “Until I met Dan,” Humphrey told me, “I never had a philosophical hero. Then I discovered that not only was he a better philosopher than me; he was a better singer, a better dancer, a better tennis player, a better pianist. There is nothing he does not do.”
The Department of Languages, Philosophy, and communication Studies hosts a student symposium each spring. This year the symposium will be the afternoon of April 21st. The idea is to provide a forum for students to present their ideas and research to a broader audience. You might want to present an idea on your own, or with a group in the form of a panel discussion, or with a group in the form of a roundtable discussion. Each kind of presentation (solo, panel, roundtable) should be conceived as taking 20 minutes or so. If you or a group of you is interested, you should send a 200-word abstract (just a short description of what you’re doing, along with a title) to christa.jones (at) usu.edu. The deadline for abstracts is this Friday, March 17th.