My obsession with preparation for my lectures combined with the frigid cold here in the Southland has numbed my brain and made me remiss in responding to some of your comments, so while I wait for it to get light enough so that I can walk without slipping and falling on the remaining icy patches, I shall attempt to make amends.
First, a quick reply to Andrew Blais a propos Quine [whose middle name, a correspondent informs me, is spelled Van Orman, not van Orman]: Quine was, in my experience, a witty and elegant stylist, in speech as well as on the page, and I am sure he was well aware of the voice he adopted in his writings -- see, for example, the wonderful opening lines of "On What There Is." But I do not think the indeterminacy of translation thesis is his effort to deal with the complexities of voice. The problems of translation are, of course, a standard theme in literary studies, but it is not prudent for a monolingual idiot like me to say too much about them.
Second: Jerry Fresia, clearly more of a Tigger even than I, invites me to view the events in Greece as the first faint suggestions of a new day dawning. Lord, I am ever ready to see a drop of water in a glass and call it half full, so I shall acquiesce. I must say that there has been a striking sea-change in the public discourse on matters of inequality, in the streets [the Occupy Movement] and in the halls of Academe [Piketty and all]. That is scarcely enough, but it is not nothing, and I choose with wanton disregard for evidence to see it as a rebirth of class struggle. With regard to class struggle, I have been reflecting on the fascinating inability of ostensibly progressive Democrats to utter the words "working class." Even Elizabeth Warren speaks endlessly of "the Middle Class," with no seeming awareness of the fact that the locution implies the existence of someone below, as well as someone above, that social position. In America, the unmentionable position below the Middle Class has come to be identified with the Ghetto, which is to say with people NOT WHITE, and so not to be evoked when one is trying to speak inclusively. I will know there is a new wind blowing when some aspirant to major public office stands up and declares "I speak for the Working Class."
And so we come to the matter of Hegel. I officially thrown in the towel. I freely confess that my inability to appreciate Hegel is a lamentable, but alas irreparable, failing on my part. Add him to the list of twenty-five! Praise him on Saint's Days! Remember him in your prayers! Acknowledge his centrality to the coming to self-awareness of Western Civilization! But spare an old man and do not require me to read him. The defense of Hegel offered by classstruggle in the lengthy quotation from Walter Kaufman is, I admit, completely new to me. Hegel, Kaufman tells us, was a witty and sprightly writer who chose not to reveal that fact on the page because -- He vass German. [I cannot help thinking of Cloris Leachman in Young Frankenstein.] This apparently is the converse of the explanation that Descartes could not help writing clearly because he was French. I had not realized that when it comes to literary style, Nationality is Destiny. But so be it.
Finally, a brief response to LFC, who notes that Rawls does in fact mention Freud in A Theory of Justice, in a fashion that makes it clear that he had read him. I stand corrected. Jack was ferociously smart, and I have no doubt at all that he had read much by Freud. I should say, by way of curious self-exculpation, that I found A Theory of Justice so stultifyingly boring after the first third or so that I actually managed to read through it only once before writing my book on it. I am absolutely certain that this fact had not the slightest effect on the correctness of my analysis in Understanding Rawls, but if someone wants to accuse me of being no sort of scholar at all, I accept, indeed, I embrace that characterization. Perhaps I should add that if there are any young apprentice philosophers reading this, that is no way to behave as a serious professional philosopher. In this regard, you must reverse the old political advice and do as I say, not as I do.
Well, the rosy fingers of dawn are creeping upward in the Eastern sky, so I shall venture out into the 20 degree cold.