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Peter Singer Talk in New Zealand Cancelled by Venue

SkyCity, a hotel, casino, and entertainment complex in Auckland, New Zealand, that was scheduled to host a talk this June by Peter Singer, the Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics in the University Center for Human Values at Princeton, has cancelled the event owing to controversy over the philosopher’s writings. Though his talks have occasioned protests in the past, according to Singer (as reported by the New Zealand Herald)  this is the first time a venue has actually cancelled a speaking engagement of his. Singer is embarking on a speaking tour to raise money for charity, but it is his earlier writings on the permissibility of parents choosing to euthanize severely disabled babies that prompted opposition to his talk in New Zealand (and which have led people to protest at appearances of his for years). According to The Guardian, the venue released a statement saying, “Whilst SkyCity supports the right of free speech, some of the themes promoted by this speaker do not reflect our values of diversity and inclusivity.” Singer is quoted as saying, “it’s extraordinary that Skycity should cancel my speaking engagement on the basis of a newspaper article without contacting either me or the organiser of my speaking tour to check the facts on which it appears to be basing the cancellation.”   The post Peter Singer Talk in New Zealand Cancelled by Venue appeared first on Daily [More]

David Efird (1974-2020)

David Efird, senior lecturer in philosophy at the University of York, died unexpectedly last Thursday. Dr. Efird worked in philosophy of religion, analytic theology, metaphysics, and epistemology. He had taught philosophy at York since 2002, and at the time of his death was the principal of one of the university’s colleges. He earned his D.Phil at Oxford University and his undergraduate degree at Duke University. He also studied at Princeton Theological Seminary and the University of Edinburgh. He became a priest in 2011. You can learn more about his work here and here. The post David Efird (1974-2020) appeared first on Daily [More]

Roger Scruton (1944-2020)

Roger Scruton, a philosopher who for many years taught at Birkbeck College, London, held various other academic appointments, wrote extensively for the public, and who was knighted in 2016 for “services to philosophy, teaching and public education”, has died. Scruton received his undergraduate and graduate education at Cambridge University. He taught at Birkbeck from 1971 to 1992. He also held appointments at other schools, including Boston University, Buckingham University, and Oxford University, as well as think tanks, such as the American Enterprise Institute. Scruton was known largely for his work in aesthetics and for his advocacy of traditional conservatism. Much of his writing was aimed at the broader public. He founded the conservative periodical The Salisbury Review, produced a wine column for The New Statesman for nine years, authored non-fiction books as well as novels, and even wrote libretti for opera. In 2018 he was appointed to the British government’s Building Better, Building Beautiful Commission, to advise on housing design. He died after a six-month battle with cancer. [This post will be updated with links to obituaries elsewhere.] The post Roger Scruton (1944-2020) appeared first on Daily [More]

The Lonely Philosopher

We might nonetheless explore the public image of the philosopher for curiosity’s sake. Atop his many perceived qualities sits his isolation from his scholarly brethren; we appear to conceive of him somehow distanced from the scientist, the historian, and the poet. This disparity is for some based in philosophy’s purported lack of substance, manifest in its scholars’ deficiency in anything by the way of economic utility. [More]

What Can Be Learned from Bertrand Russell’s Life as a Philanderer? Part III

As Bertrand Russell moved from relationship to relationship, Russell eased into old age with Edith, his fourth wife and something with whom he experienced 'great happiness.' During this time, something appears to have changed in his temperment as well--a mellowness and comfort with life. Did his relationship with Edith help him finally discover something he sought all his life? [More]

What Can Be Learned from Bertrand Russell’s Life as a Philanderer? Part I

Russell springs to mind hunched over a cluttered bureau, suckling the temples of his spectacles in deep coitus with a battered tome, caring not for what might lie beyond its pages. This image is not, however, entirely accurate; he was not so musty and desolate in the way of his pigeonhole. He is remembered grandly as a philosopher, a mathematician, a revolutionary—but by no means least as a philanderer. [More]

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