By Stanley Cavell
This paintings is an advent to the lifetime of philosophy within the usa, as Emerson as soon as lived it, in all its topographical ambiguity.
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Extra resources for A Pitch of Philosophy: Autobiographical Exercises (The Jerusalem-Harvard Lectures)
It took years of experience in graduate school before I could quite recognize the degree of nervous laughter or outright contempt such a reading can elicit quite generally among teachers and students of philosophy, a degree well beyond a response to ordinary incompetence or inconsequence. I am saying that I still do not believe that this excessiveness is understood. Things get worse. My way of taking the passage shows it, more particularly, as a comment on a certain style of writing-evidently that of the Investigations in which it Philosophy and the Arrogation of Voice 15 appears-since the implement is, to speak with due banality, masculine, but tht gesture (of waiting, putting one's self, or body, on the line that way) is feminine; so that patience, and a recognition of rebuff and exhaustion, also become earmarks of the writing of this pedagogy, simultaneously with what Thoreau calls the labor of his hands only, and what Emerson in "Experience" calls manipular attempts and expresses impatience with.
To do or say aught to conciliate one, is the healthy attitude of human nature. . Independent, irresponsible, looking out from his corner on such people and facts as pass by, he tries and sentences them on their merits, in the swift, summary way of boys, as good, bad, interesting, silly, eloquent, troublesome.... But the man is as it were clapped into jail by his consciousness. As soon as he has once acted or spoken with eclat he is a committed person, watched by the sympathy or by the hatred of hundreds, whose affections must now enter into his account.
Who gave the former and what is the provenance of the latter? I was soon to discover that judges, not alone parents, need a reason to grant the petition to change your name, and a reason for the name you wish to change it to. In the judge's case, the need for a reason was related to the procedur~ I learned I would undergo of having my intention to change published in a newspaper every day for some weeks. The place in the one issue of the newspaper I was shown with my 26 A PITCH OF PHILOSOPHY jeopardized name listed in it spoke of possible debts that the following persons may have incurred.