Category Archives: Academia

The Debate over the Garfield-Van Norden Essay in The Stone

From Jay Garfield and Bryan W. Van Norden’s “If Philosophy Won’t Diversify, Let’s Call It What It Really Is,” http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/11/opinion/if-philosophy-wont-diversify-lets-call-it-what-it-really-is.html :

The vast majority of philosophy departments in the United States offer courses only on philosophy derived from Europe and the English-speaking world. … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Philosophy | Leave a comment

Obituary for David S. Nivison

David Shepherd Nivison, emeritus professor of Philosophy, Religious Studies, and East Asian Languages and Cultures at Stanford University, passed away peacefully on October 16, 2014, aged 91.
Nivison had a career trajectory that would be almost impossible in the contemporary academic … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, East Asian Studies, Philosophy | Leave a comment

My College Is Being Blackmailed

My college is being blackmailed. The story of the blackmail goes back to Margaret Spellings, Secretary of Education under Bush the Younger. Spellings (who has no classroom teaching experience, and no degree that would even qualify her to teach at … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Teaching | Leave a comment

The McDonalds-ification of Higher Education

There is an approach to learning that is corroding education, especially higher education, in the US: I call it the “McDonalds-ification of Education.”
“Fast food” has been around for a long time. The ancient Romans had it. But McDonald’s raised it … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Philosophy | Leave a comment

You Need the Humility to Learn

As a graduate student at Stanford, I was a teaching assistant for a year-long course required of freshmen: Cultures, Ideas, and Values. I have no idea whether this particular course still exists, but I still have vivid memories of it.

The … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Teaching | Leave a comment

Chinese Philosophy Rankings of the Philosophical Gourmet Report

Because I am on the Advisory Board for the Philosophical Gourmet Report (PRG), I received an inquiry about the potential impact of its Chinese philosophy rankings on the field of Chinese philosophy.  I thought I would share my reply in case … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Philosophy, Sinology | Leave a comment

Vassar in Chinese

While designing my new business cards, I discovered an interesting tidbit:  there is no standard Chinese name for Vassar.  I went with 瓦薩 Wǎsà because it seems to be the most common one on the web.  However, I have also … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Sinology | Leave a comment

Advice to student contemplating a doctorate in Chinese philosophy

An undergraduate recently emailed me, asking for advice about getting a doctorate in Chinese philosophy.  The student explained that he was particularly interested in the comparative study of epistemology and the philosophy of language from an analytic perspective.  In addition … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Philosophy | Leave a comment

Philosophy Majors after Graduation

My department had a large graduating class last year:  28 senior majors.  I sent out a poll, asking students what their post-graduation plans were.  This is part of a project I have to work up a handout of what our … Continue reading

Posted in Academia, Teaching | Leave a comment

My Job

I have to work out the days and times for our department’s courses for next year, based on the preferences of my colleagues.  Of course, I have colleagues who teach at the same times, on the same days, in the … Continue reading

Posted in Academia | Leave a comment