Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Is Obama a Kantian?

In his speech at his first state dinner honoring the prime minister of India, Obama approvingly quotes Kant: "For it's been said that 'the most beautiful things in the universe are the starry heavens above us and the feeling of duty within us.' Mr. Prime Minister, today we worked to fulfill our duty --bring our countries closer together than ever before. Tonight, under the stars, we celebrate the spirit that will sustain our partnership -- the bonds of friendship between our people." Transcript here.

Maybe this is the influence of Rahm Emanuel, who happened to admire Hegel and "the nineteenth-century German thinkers" during his student days.

(Thanks to David Wood for the tip)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

NY German Idealism Workshop, Nov. 20th

The NY German Idealism Workshop will hold its next meeting on Friday, November 20th. Patricia Kitcher (Columbia University) will be giving a paper entitled:

“Kant’s Spontaneous Thinker and (More) Spontaneous Agent.” Robert Howell (SUNY Albany) will respond.

Date: Friday, November 20th
Location: Columbia University, Philosophy Hall, Room 716
Time: 4:30-6:30pm

Light refreshments will be served.

To receive a copy of Kitcher's paper in advance, email Matt Congdon at