Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Philosophical New Years

In the first year of the PhD, I was just happy to be here, working towards the end. Now, my coursework is over. Now, the light at the end of the tunnel is very bright. I have no classes and have begun to take dissertation hours so that I can at least have some time to dedicate to my literary prospectus and prepare for my preliminary examination. As such, this year I am done reading other miscellaneous things. I have two responsibilities to myself philosophically. I will read through the chronological list of the history of Western philosophy, and secondly I will read and engage material only relevant to the intersection between phenomenology and ethics. 

In addition, I will complete the reading of listed articles for a friend's more analytic program as to at least judge myself competent to continue my skill set I acquired during my Masters. It would be so easy to throw it all away and just market myself as a Continental who could teach the history of ethics, and even work from that perspective. However, I find myself in agreement with a comment made by Bernard Waldenfels made at lunch last semester. I am interested in describing things. I am not interested in construing philosophical activity as a sort of hermeneutics that eschews the world for interpretation. Someday, I will have to face Continental philosophy's more Heideggerian orthodoxy in a formal engagement. In essence, I will have to revisit Heidegger's conception of truth and refute it. However, that is not today, nor likely to follow for some time.