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Sunday, October 19, 2014

#SPEP14 Tweeter/Absentee "Buddy System"

Daniel Brunson (@danieljbrunson) asked me if I could figure out a way to connect (1) people who won't be attending #SPEP14 but who are interested in hearing specific panels and (2) Tweeters who will be live-tweeting those same panels. I think something like a digital-philosophical "buddy system" is a great idea, especially for those unfortunate souls who won't be able to make it to New Orleans.  (Incidentally, I've been in NOLA for two days already, and I'll be here through the end of SPEP.  I'm happy to report that the weather is beautiful, the food is delicious, the drinks are strong, the music is loud and the people are as endearingly weird as ever.  Looking forward to seeing you all in a few days!)  Anyway, here are a few suggestions for how we might make the #SPEPbuddysystem work:

First, SPEP-Tweeters should use the comments section below this post in the next few days to list sessions that they know they plan to attend/tweet, along with their Twitter handles.  Those not attending can check that list, see if anyone will be tweeting the session you're interested in, and "follow' that Tweeter during the live session.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Leiter/PGR Archive Is Now Closed (and, A Note from Your Archivist)

This has been a strange month for academic Philosophy, for professional philosophers and, as a more or less direct consequence, for this blog.  A little less than four weeks ago, on September 24, I began collecting various posts, essays and articles related to what I then anticipated was going to be, at the very least, a semi-significant series of events vis-á-via the controversial behaviors of one of Philosophy's most prominent bloggers, Brian Leiter, and his controversial (but highly-influential) rankings of Philosophy graduate programs in the Anglophone world, better known as the Philosophical Gourmet Report (PGR). In the weeks since I first posted what I called an "Archive of the Meltdown," that Archive has had a number of "hits" that is nearing 2x the number of members in the largest professional organization for Philosophers in the world, the American Philosophical Association (which, if you're doing the math, has a membership of roughly 11,000). A shorter version of the Archive, which I posted as an Interactive Timeline of the Leiter/PGR Controversy, has gotten about half that traffic (which still outnumbers professional Philosophers in the United States).  All that is just to say, my original suspicion that this was going to be a semi-significant series of events for professional Philosophy was more than confirmed.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

CFT (Call For Tweeters) #SPEP14

Last year's meeting of the Society for Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy (SPEP) was the first such conference, as far as I'm aware, that was live-tweeted by a significant-enough number of participants to be noteworthy.  I was one of the SPEP Twitterati last year in Eugene, and I wrote a post about that experience after I returned home from the conference.  If you're interested, take a look at the tweets from #SPEP13, which Chris Long (@cplong) of Penn State collected and "Storified" here to be preserved for posterity.  This year's conference in New Orleans is coming up in just under two weeks (Oct 23-25), so I wanted to send out a CFT for #SPEP14 as well as provide a central place for SPEP-Tweeters to find (and follow) one another.

[First things first:  I'll be at SPEP and I'll be live-tweeting it again this year.  My Twitter handle is @DrLeighMJohnson.  The Twitter handle for this blog is @RMWMTMBM.  You can easily "follow" both of us by clicking the appropriate icons in the Twitter columns to your right.]

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Interactive Timeline of the Leiter/PGR Controversy

As readers know, I have maintained an Archive on this blog with links to most (if not all) of the public essays, statements and posts regarding the recent controversy surrounding Brian Leiter and the Philosophical Gourmet Report.  A lot as been said over the last few weeks and, if you're interested, you can trudge through all of it day-by-day by visiting the Archive.  On the other hand, if you only want the highlights, what follows is for you.

I've created a curated an Interactive Timeline of the 2014 Leiter/PGR Controversy.  The interactive timeline only traces the general narrative arc of the last several weeks (and leaves out most of the nuance and detail) so please read it with that caveat in mind.

I will continue to update the (detailed and exhaustive) Archive of the Meltdown as long as it seems necessary.  I also ask those who wish to share the interactive timeline to please link to this post (rather than linking to the timeline directly).  Of course, I welcome any any comments or suggestions you may have regarding the Archive or the Timeline, which you can post in the comments section below.

Thursday, October 02, 2014

What You Can Do To Support PIKSI (which you *should* support) OTHER THAN Donating Your Money (which, if you are able, you *should* also do)

It's been a busy (in fact, record-breakingly busy) month here on RMWMTMBM, so I wanted to take a momentary break from the Leiter/PGR/SeptemberStatement brouhaha--about which this blog has more or less unfortunately become something akin to professional Philosophy's version of TMZ-- and instead remark upon an initiative as important to our discipline as, and not wholly unrelated to, the recent Sturm und Drang vis-á-vis "civility" and "rankings." In the interest of performatively enacting for intro-Philosophy students everywhere the importance of an appropriately-situated thesis statement, let me just explicitly avow here: IF you are a professional Philosopher who has bothered to take an even passing glance at the demographic data of our (unfortunately and WOEFULLY retrograde) profession, you OUGHT consider yourself ipso facto obliged to contribute whatever discretionary material means you have at your disposal to support PIKSI (aka, the Philosophy in an Inclusive Key Summer Institute).