Advice to a non-academic lover of philosophy


By Terence Blake

“Philosophy is a way of life based on a passion for the creation of concepts, analyses, and arguments. All the rest is just a Game of Thrones, the calculations and positionings of Hom Academicus.”
“Some academics are glad to read and cite Bourdieu, or some other sociologist, without applying it to themselves and their milieu. The personal has lots of social in it, and “social” means power relations. The professional is the political. Readers are not paranoid if they see a dark underside to many public discussions in the world of ideas, nor should one feel intellectually mediocre and insignificant if one is not a philosophy professor. The only solution is to continue your individuation despite the traps, obstacles, and social and intellectual boycotts put up by unscrupulous academic game players.

Many philosophers have talked about this. Gilles Deleuze talked of the nomad image of thought and the private thinker versus the state image of thought and the bureaucrat. He distinguishes between the vitality of a philosophical becoming that can traverse us and lead us on a process of individuation containing many other becomings and the sterility of “reflection” in its private and public forms. Paul Feyerabend declared that his official job or profession was “thought-bureaucrat”, but that what he actually did was to write texts that upset people. In both cases it’s a question of seeking to destabilise the transcendences and go with the argumentative and conceptual flows.”

From Agent Swarm


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