Month: November 2012

Open Access

Yesterday, we had a meeting of Faculty Council for the Arts (I have to go as chair of our undergrad studies committee). This poor librarian starts us off with a 15-minute presentation about open access publishing, and it was excellent: all the global justice and other reasons for opting, if one can, for open access. Then she finishes, and this guy lights into her like I haven’t seen. So he goes on and she asks, “Can you tell me what you think is wrong with open access?” And he says, “One word: crud.” And then he says something about it being “pay to publish.” Then our new dean pipes up and said she had “no idea” open access publishing included peer review.

So it was left to me to explain this thing called the internet and how Society and Space does as much open access as possible and how peer review works, such as, for example, in our department-based open-access journal Analectica Hermeneutica. I prefer publishing open access myself–I get much more feedback–and I have yet to pay to publish. But I share this only because I didn’t realize that this was a widely-held view that open-access = vanity press. And that some old guard is quite visceral in their anger over it.

Courses for the Winter

Here is what I’m teaching in the Winter, one an undergraduate course, and the second a combined senior-level/graduate seminar:

PHL 2500: Contemporary Issues
What is time? It’s almost a cliche to say that we are living in more “sped-up” times, that we are more or less forced to make decisions in continual modes of crisis. In this class, we will look to how different conceptions of time in modernity are behind major cultural shifts in capitalism as well as our relationship to the past and future. We will begin with canonical readings in the philosophy of time, then turn to recent philosophical work on the changing considerations of time in modernity, especially as it relates to the political.

PHL 4843: Seminar in 20/21st Century Continental Philosophy
This course will take up the important work of Jacques Derrida. In particular, we will be focusing on his challenging reconceptions of time, in order to combat readings that would make Derrida merely as part of the “linguistic turn.” Derrida’s work will be related to thinkers such as Heidegger, Luce Irigaray, and Jean-Luc Nancy. Since Derrida’s work often was itself a reading of various canonical figures, we will read from these figures to set up Derrida’s own texts and to think through the validity of these readings.