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Now Available: Volumes I, II, III, and IV of the Collected Published and Unpublished Papers.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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Thursday, January 5, 2017

KEEPING TRACK

My big effort in the fall semester was of course the series of recorded lectures on Kant's First Critique, which, with the assistance of Alex Campbell, were posted on YouTube.  From time to time I check to see how they are doing.  The fact that the first lecture has been viewed 25,563 times is, I think, simply an indication that people will try anything once, but I am really pleased that the ninth and last lecture has been viewed 1453 times.   That is way more than the total number of students who took my course on The Critique the fourteen times I taught it during my long career.  If we assume, without any evidence whatsoever, that viewers of the last lecture also viewed the previous eight [I know, I know, there is no good reason to suppose that] then I think I can reasonably conclude that the series was a success.

I would like to do a series on the thought of Karl Marx, but I am afraid the UNC Philosophy Department would not welcome my hogging their seminar room a second time.  Maybe something else will come along.

Meanwhile, the evidence continues to accumulate that the election of Trump has energized and mobilized the center, center left, and even the progressive left in America.  Considering that he has not yet been inaugurated, that is very good news.

7 comments:

Ankur Wadhwa said...

just want to thank you for amazing lectures on critique of pure reason. currently i am on 5th so clearly views on last will rise. Also as they are there for eternity will enlighten generations.

I will be the most excited person to see your lectures on marx , as marx has had a lot of influence on me since my childhood .

Robert Paul Wolff said...

I am delighted you are enjoying them!

s. wallerstein said...

I've said this before, but as you point out, repetition is the sign of the ethical.

I learned a lot from your lectures on ideological critique, which were filmed in your library. I see no reason why you can't film lectures on Marx in the same place or wherever is convenient for you. It matters not at all to me whether lectures are filmed in a seminar room or not.

So I vote for the lectures on Marx and after them, on Kierkegaard.

levinebar said...

in 2017, a lecture--especially one that doesn't use graphics--can be video'd anywhere. You should certainly do the Marx series, whether in the UNC seminar room or elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

At some point I will build my nerve to write a more resounding thank you for the gift that were those lectures. Please rest assured they are invaluable. As you seem to be taking requests then I would start a tally for Hume. Trust me I wouldn't dare to think of myself as a pupil, so this method of knowledge sharing is hard to quantify to it's incredible value to me. Thank you.

Ted Talbot said...

Surprised that finding a room at UNC is an issue. I gather from some remarks of yours that you've also thought deeply about Spinoza, but I've never come across anything of yours on Spinoza in print. I'd be very interested in your views on the subject, especially the grounding of his poltical philosophy in his metaphysics, if you ever care to express them. Again, thanks a lot for the great Kant lectures.

Tom Cathcart said...

It's 4 a.m., and your clear exposition of Kierkegaard's Preface to "Philosophical Fragments" in boxnet has me lying wide awake, composing the following dialogue in my head:

HEGEL, KIERKEGAARD, AND MARX MEET IN LOGIC HEAVEN

Hegel: Hey, guys, I’m just reading this 1927 poem by Max Ehrmann, “The Desiderata.” He says, “The universe is unfolding as it should.” I’ll drink to that! Sounds like he’s read my “Phenomenology of Spirit.”
Kierkegaard: No doubt! You both sound like my nemesis, Bishop Mynster: fat, happy, burghers. You don’t get it that individuals aren’t the universe, and we’re not “unfolding as we should!”
Marx: You can say that again! Almost all of us are alienated as hell! Bishop Mynster can be so sanguine about life BECAUSE he’s a burgher!
Hegel: Hey, be fair, guys. You both got the concept of 'alienation' from me.
Kierkegaard: We did? Damn. I hate it when you try to confuse us.
Hegel: You guys are so keen on alienation. But to be alienated, there has to be something you’re alienated from. You guys need me for The End: the kingdom of God in your case, Soren, or the classless society at the end of history, Karl.
Marx: But, Georg, if you just home in on the inevitability, you’ll go to sleep, like Bishop Mynster, and sit around drinking sherry and turning out pap. You’ve gotta get in the struggle!
Kierkegaard: Yeah, Georg, where’s your passion?!
Hegel: Well, you gotta admit, it sounds like we all need each other’s logic. I guess that’s why we all three called it ‘dialectic.’ Maybe my move in world history was necessary to spawn you guys!! Wouldn’t that be ironic?!
Kierkegaard: Oy, my head hurts. Maybe I should give Regine a call, see if she’d like to go out for Chinese and a movie.
Mynster (off stage left): Now you’re talkin'!

(Okay, now maybe I can go back to sleep.)