Coming Soon:

The following books by Robert Paul Wolff are available on Amazon.com as e-books: KANT'S THEORY OF MENTAL ACTIVITY, THE AUTONOMY OF REASON, UNDERSTANDING MARX, UNDERSTANDING RAWLS, THE POVERTY OF LIBERALISM, A LIFE IN THE ACADEMY, MONEYBAGS MUST BE SO LUCKY, AN INTRODUCTION TO THE USE OF FORMAL METHODS IN POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY.
Now Available: Volumes I, II, III, and IV of the Collected Published and Unpublished Papers.

NOW AVAILABLE ON YOUTUBE: LECTURES ON KANT'S CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON. To view the lectures, go to YouTube and search for "Robert Paul Wolff Kant." There they will be.

To contact me about organizing, email me at rpwolff750@gmail.com




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Monday, October 24, 2011

LIFE GOES ON

I am home again after a short but very enjoyable visit to D.C. to see my big sister, Barbara, and my younger son, Tobias [who came down from Philly for a day]. All that was missing was my older son, Patrick, for me to be with the three smartest people I know. My sister, at eighty-one, has found her true metier as a teacher of cutting edge developments in molecular biology and evolutionary genetics. When I was a little boy, she taught me to read, and she is still teaching me more than three-quarters of a century later.

While on the plane and in my hotel room, I began the re-reading of Max Weber's The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, in preparation for my next mini-tutorial. It is more than fifty years since I read the book, and though I had recalled quite clearly the core thesis, I had forgotten the astonishing richness and subtlety of Weber's exposition and argument. It is going to be a great challenge to caputre even a small part of that in my tutorial, and I hope you will be patient with me as I struggle to do so.

Meanwhile, Rick Perry, in an apparently desperate effort to pull himself out of single-digit territory, is flirting with Birtherism [the bizarre cult of people who think Barack Obama was not born in the United States.] You will all recall that Karl Marx said that history repeats itself, first as tragedy, then as farce [referring to the reign of Louis Napoleon in France in the middle of the 19th century.] I am afraid that in the Republican Party, history repeats itself, first as farce, then as desperation.

Later today, I shall try to launch the Weber mini-tutorial with some preliminary remarks.

2 comments:

Jim said...

Professor Wolff --

In your preliminary remarks on Weber, can you expand a bit on your previous comment regarding the current state of the sociological discipline today?

Robert Paul Wolff said...

I'll try