Sunday, October 30, 2011


A colleague of mine has a new paper coming out in Transactions and has given some brief description about it here. He combines insights from Heidegger and Dewey in much of what he does. I'm looking forward to reading it.

I also apologize for not blogging in a while. I have done some more work on editing Chapter 1 and have been very busy trying to internalize Scheler. Part of my attention has been to see what phenomenological method means for both Heidegger and Scheler--a point you might have thought made its appearance before introducing the problem in Chapter 1. However, I found it more logically conducive to establish what the problem is I find in Heidegger's writings before elucidating differences between Heidegger and Scheler. Chapter 2 is an expository chapter about Scheler's thought---mostly from the Formalism about his phenomenological ethics. I will draw conclusions and more comparisons in Chapter 3. It is a very simple plan. Right?

I have found that writing this montrosity is an organic process. It is a process of developing and going back, and revising what you have done. There are loopholes in my writing and Scheler's thinking, places where Scheler simply asserts his thinking and I find myself picking up the pieces from what he has done. For instance, there is a good a section where Scheler starts meditating on the nature of moral facts. It is familiar. Like an old friend, I feel like I am in the presence of Ross and Moore.

I have found that the most challenging part of dissertation writing is attempting to assume who is your target audience. Certainly, my committee is filled with a whole bunch of people knowledgeable about phenomenology. They know the differences between hermeneutic and Scheler's phenomenology of essences. However, the general reader would not, and so I am writing the dissertation to a target audience between my committee and the general reader.

Sometimes, I feel shorn philosophically. I am entering debates that are much older than myself, and sometimes I am not too sure they need retrieved. I am fascinated with the limits of phenomenology, conducting a phenomenological description about lived-experience and engaging texts primarily without the mediation of secondary literature. To write on Heidegger and ethics is so 1990s. We'll see where the dissertation writing takes me.

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