A demonstrator protesting the shooting death of Alton Sterling is detained by law enforcement near the headquarters of the Baton Rouge Police Department in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S. July 9, 2016.  REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman     TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY      - RTSH3XR

Unity and the Police

I don’t really consume any television news sources, so the tv at the gym has been a revelation. In the worst sense. Of course, as you might guess, most of it was a combination of endless heartbreak pieces about the dead police officers in Dallas and commentaries meant to focus and direct our response. I…

FullSizeRender.jpg

Police and Extra-Judicial Killing

I really have no idea what to say as another pair of high-profile killing make their way around our awareness. But I noticed something and here’s a note on that. Every few rounds of social media response to awful violence seem to generate a twist on vocabulary. In my corner of the world, I keep…

kiarostami 1

Abbas Kiarostami, Rest in Peace

Rest in peace, Abbas Kiarostami. I remember when he had his moment in the U.S., when Taste of Cherry made its rounds. It’s nothing to say that it’s a fantastic bit of cinema. It just is. I remember thinking how much I loved his lingering without ponderous sense of shot and attention to landscape, how…

colonialism image

Philosophy, Decolonization, #NotAllWhites

When I posted this response to Garfield and Van Norden’s piece to my site, I figured it was a small concern, but worth writing out. I’m super gratified that it attracted a lot of interest and responses – some criticizing my claims, some ridiculing my motivations, some affirming the programme-of-sorts I tried to lay out…

decolonize

Diversity, “Neutrality,” Philosophy

I was really happy to read a new opinion piece by Jay Garfield and Bryan Van Norden in The New York Times, reflecting on the state of philosophy as a discipline. Though I now identify professionally as an area studies person (Black or Africana studies), my disciplinary orientation is broadly philosophical. That orientation is not…

cropped-chiraqscreen-1.png

Eight Thoughts on Chi-Raq

Eight thoughts on Chi-Raq, which I’ve just rewatched after missing it at the theater. I have to say, it was a completely and totally different film than I’d been led to expect by blogs, reviews, and the normal blowup that comes with a Spike Lee joint.

Mel-CS-Jazz-Vijay-Iyer

Note on Vijay Iyer

Here are the comments I made introducing Vijay Iyer at the 28 January 2016 Hutchins Center colloquium at Harvard, with links to text and examples. … Introducing Vijay Iyer It is an immense pleasure and honor to introduce Vijay Iyer today, Franklin D. and Florence Rosenblatt Professor of the Arts in the Department of Music….

lg sc

On Guenther’s Solitary Confinement

Here are my long-ish remarks on Lisa Guenther’s book Solitary Confinement: Social Death and Its Afterlives, for a book session at the 2014 American Philosophical Association. * It is nothing surprising to say that Lisa Guenther’s Solitary Confinement: Social Death and its Afterlives is a stunningly important work. Her topic – the meaning and significance of the practice…

JamesBaldwinNB2Banner

Privacy, coloniality, identity

Here are my remarks from the roundtable discussion on James Baldwin and Privacy at the American Studies Association meeting in Los Angeles. They are short (a 5-8 minute slot), but I try here to think about colonialism as hyper-visibility and publicity and how Baldwin’s conception of Black cultural formation in the United States operates with…

levinas and the postcolonial cover

Levinas and after

The following is my response to comments by Sonia Sikka and Kris Sealey at the 23 October book session on my Levinas and the Postcolonial. They commented extensively, raising questions of the future of Levinas studies, philosophical pluralism, and the legacies of colonialism in contemporary thought. This is what I have to say in reply…