Exhibit X

by rsbakker

Aphorism of the Day: There’s a time to ponder and there’s a time to communicate. So long as we don’t ask the what of the first, and the who of the second, we can pretend that art is the sum of their confusion.

I toyed with the idea of actually using this blog as a platform to “publish” some of my philosophical writing. But the last three posts have reminded me just how tribal philosophy is.

I literally have dozens of essays, a MA thesis, one aborted dissertation, another well on the way to completion, on a whole variety of philosophical topics. When it came to papers critiquing various philosophers on various topics, I was urged by many of my instructors to publish (and thus prepare my CV for the dreaded Job Wars) but I could never bring myself to follow through. When it came to my original stuff, no one knew what the hell I was talking about. My success with the former convinced me that I wasn’t simply crazy, that I was cutting a path that others could potentially follow and elaborate, but I had difficulty playing the game the way I was supposed to. As a couple of my professors told me, I needed to earn my bona fides practicing straight philosophy first – a sensible enough admonition. And yet I just couldn’t bring myself to stand still. One year I’m a (quasi)Derridean, the next I’m an (quasi)Adornian, then I’m a (quasi)Wittgensteinian, then I’m … something nobody seems to quite recognize. And I continue to be – for some reason – thoroughly ashamed of all my philosophical output.

Ashamed of things I don’t even believe… 

Which is probably why I bolted the way I did when the first offers for The Prince of Nothing came in. (A decision I may live to regret, given the creeping growth of illegal downloads).

So, if even professional philosophers, that most absurd and rarefied of all hothouse tribes, are squinting their eyes and shaking their heads, what about all the tribes of real people?

I mean, I still suffer the urge to shake my head in summary disdain and dismissal whenever I encounter something I can’t readily understand and appreciate, even though I’ve forced my way past that instinct more times than I can count. I mean, I’ve read Difference and Repetition closely, for Christ’s sake! I have no doubt whatsoever that these last three posts have convinced any number of potential readers to leave their ‘Bakker itch’ unscratched.

So I don’t know what to do with my more ‘technical’ musings. Bury them, I suppose, like all things precious and problematic…

Or incriminating.