Wilkinson On Human Nature

Lynne Kiesling

I’m working my way through the recent Daedelus issue on human nature, but have not read the Rorty article yet. I wasn’t expecting a strong, persuasive argument. Apparently, according to Will Wilkinson, my expectations are even a little high:

Richard Rorty’s paper, “Philosopher-envy” in the new Daedalus issue on human nature is just trash. You’d think that someone who has given up rational argumentation would be a better rhetorician. Instead, Rorty seems like he’s just phoning it in. The sophism is almost too transparent to count as sophism. He must be tired. The paper smells like death.

Ouch! Do go read Will’s post, to which I cannot do justice by excerpting. I hope that Will follows this post up with at least one on the other papers in the volume, presumably some of which will sit more comfortably with Will (and with me).