#ReBIT18 – The Question of Medium

Texts, conversation, and friendship … I value these three things more than anything else. Whether books or gestures or habits or art, conversations about texts among friends – new friends, old friends, everyone in between – just make me happy. It’s the sort of thing that makes work-life worth living. I do small, seminar-style symposia…

Draylen Mason, photographed

The last couple of days have had a bunch of photos of Draylen Mason circulating, the kid who was killed by the somehow suddenly sympathetic bomber in Austin. You can guess all my feelings about that last part.   But these photos of Mason … I find them so moving and so difficult to look…

Words for Violence

I ran into three of my students while walking across the quad this afternoon. We stopped to talk. I planned to wave and nod, but they wanted to talk. All three are African-American.   They wanted to talk – or sound off, as much as anything – about “yet another” murder of an unarmed Black…

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…

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…

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…

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…