Continental philosophy tends to be very textual, defined not so much by a set of problems as by a set of interpretive practices. We read Levinas or Irigaray and write interpretations of those texts. Of course, we do more than issue commentary; we think through texts, grappling with problems, concepts, and historical and cultural phenomena. Still, most of our work remains closely tied to texts. Consequently, it often reproduces a distinction between primary and secondary philosophical work that we might question. Nobody would deny the creativity of John Sallis’ or David Wood’s work or that of Debra Bergoffen or Kelly Oliver; they are doing philosophy, not just writing about others’ doings. Yet, how many SPEP papers are on the work of Sallis or Oliver or Bernasconi, outside of author-meets-critic and book sessions? How many simply proclaim themselves to be doing philosophy, independent of any text?
Copyright © 2012, Penn State University Press.
The definitive version is available at: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5325/jspecphil.26.2.0299
McWhorter, Ladelle. "The Next Fifty Years." Journal of Speculative Philosophy 26, no. 2 (2012): 299-307. doi:10.5325/jspecphil.26.2.0299.
McWhorter, Ladelle, "The Next Fifty Years" (2012). Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies Faculty Publications. 8.