Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Hot Off the Press: "Comparing Lives" in Philosophical Investigations 34(3)

Here. The whole issue looks great, and I look forward to reading Mounce's paper on Winch and Anscombe.

(This means, due to copyright agreements, that I'll have to take my penultimate draft offline. However, if you have problems accessing the published version, let me know, and I'll do what I can to assist.)


  1. Apart from what's in parentheses this is almost exactly what I was thinking of posting. I guess I won't bother, but congratulations again.

  2. Thanks. (Hey, post away if you think someone might read the paper who wouldn't otherwise, and that it's worth reading!)

  3. Oh, it's worth reading. Maybe I will post anyway. Right now, though, I've got to run.

  4. Congratulations on another very fine paper, and in such a fitting place of publication to boot.

    I especially liked the Appendix. When Rhees's Moral Questions came out, I was very impressed by "The Death of a Dog" - it made one of the strongest impressions any text in any genre has ever made on me. I'm a cat person (although lethally allergic to cats) and not a dog person, and I'd always thought that I'd never come to understand dog persons, but reading Rhees instantly made it possible for me, and even made me feel rather philistine and embarrassed by my previous failure.

    I even did something I've never told anyone about: I looked up what had been Rhees's address at the time (in the Mind Association membership list published annually in Mind), and the next time I was in London, I took a taxi to see the house and the surroundings where tragedy had struck for Rhees - in an attempt to somehow get metaphysically close to the by then long dead Rhees, the way he himself wanted to be metaphysically close to his dead dog. What takes the cake is that it had been a perfect sunny summer day from morning to evening, until the exact moment the taxi pulled up at the address, at which point there began a ferocious English rainstorm that lasted at least twenty minutes.

    So I'm glad "The Death of a Dog" has now inspired philosophical discussion too. I already feel that this paper is destined to be returned to (by me at least) long into the future, the way something like "Eating Meat and Eating People" is (by me at least).

  5. Thanks, Tommi. Earlier drafts of the paper did not include the appendix, and I added it during a dramatic revision of the paper (after it had been granted a revise & resubmit verdict). The prior draft had in many ways gotten away from my initial intent to re-introduce Rhees' work on these matters, and once I had re-committed to focusing on the project of "retrieval" (as it were) I realized that I had to include something about "The Death of a Dog." (In this sense the label of that section as "Appendix" is quite misleading!)

    As for your pilgrimage, an ominous story if ever there was one!

    (I intend to respond to your other comments about the other paper when I have time to do so carefully.)