Book Presentation: Essays on Philosophy, Praxis and Culture. An Eclectic, Provocative and Prescient Collection
Anthem Press (New York · London · Delhi · Melbourne) 2022.
This collection provides a panoramic view of practical philosophical insight, ranging across a spectrum of humanistic themes. The overall thrust of the collection can be viewed as a realization of John Dewey’s forthright vision, expressed in 1917: “Philosophy recovers itself when it ceases to be a device for dealing with the problems of philosophers and becomes a method, cultivated by philosophers, for dealing with the problems of men.” Indeed, these essays deal with problems of humanity writ large. They also constitute a compelling response to Mortimer Adler’s clarion call in 1965, that philosophy “must cease to be an activity conducted by moles, each burrowing in its own hole, and become a public and cooperative enterprise.” As these essays reveal, Marinoff has answered Adler’s call, helping transform and return philosophy to the agora, which in contemporary parlance amounts to the global village. That his popular books on philosophy for everyday life have sold millions of copies in dozens of languages has distracted some—perhaps too many—philosophers from exploring what he has written for a philosophical audience itself. This book helps remedy that distraction. This presentation will briefly characterize each essay, while revealing some of the “back stories” behind their writing. The presentation’s format is a talk illustrated by slides, followed by a Q&A. Suggested time frame is a 50-60 minute talk and a 20-30 minute discussion.