Heil Heidegger!

Heidegger Action Figure

“How many scholarly stakes in the heart will we need before Martin Heidegger (1889-1976), still regarded by some as Germany’s greatest 20th-century philosopher, reaches his final resting place as a prolific, provincial Nazi hack? Overrated in his prime, bizarrely venerated by acolytes even now, the pretentious old Black Forest babbler makes one wonder whether there’s a university-press equivalent of wolfsbane, guaranteed to keep philosophical frauds at a distance.” (The Chronicle of Higher Education)

Going to the Dogs

Moral in Tooth and Claw: Animals are in.’ This might well be called the decade of the animal. Research on animal behavior has never been more vibrant and more revealing of the amazing cognitive, emotional, and moral capacities of a broad range of animals. That is particularly true of research into social behavior—how groups of animals form, how and why individuals live harmoniously together, and the underlying emotional bases for social living. It’s becoming clear that animals have both emotional and moral intelligences.” (The Chronicle of Higher Education)


The Dogs Have Eyes — And the Nose Knows: “…[W]hat do we really know about the creatures we’ve promoted to full-fledged family members? To judge from the proliferation of books, classes and celebrity trainers offering their own elaborate theories of the beast, the answer is “Not as much as we’d like.” It’s a central irony of our pet-obsessed era: As retail-driven humanization of pets reaches increasingly improbable levels — 56 percent of dog owners report buying Christmas presents for their animals — we’re more eager than ever to understand their essential dogginess.” (Washington Post)


[Malcolm] Gladwell’s latest book, What the Dog Saw, bundles together his favourite articles from the New Yorker since he joined as a staff writer in 1996. It makes for a handy crash course in the world according to Gladwell: this is the bedrock on which his rise to popularity is built. A warning, though: it’s hard to read the book without the sneaking suspicion that you’re unwittingly taking part in a social experiment he’s masterminded to provide grist for his next book. Times are hard, good ideas are scarce: it may just be true. But more about that later…” (Guardian.UK review)