The original Hawks and Handsaws

In my very first entry to this blog, when discussing what led me to start Hawks and Handsaws, I mentioned that I had made a previous attempt at blogging once upon a time.

Some years ago, I actually did start a blog under an anonymous identity, and wrote a total of three posts for an entirely empty room before losing interest. After that, I pretty much gave up on the idea.
Since apparently I've declared summer of 2018 to be Blast From The Past Summer, displaying a good bit of my philosophy-related university writing on here for us all to look back on, I figure why not explain a little more about that first attempt at blogging and put up some of what I wrote there as well. After all, there are a few people out there reading what I write now, which is a few more readers than I had back during my first attempt. Read more...

Confessions of a helpless epistemon

I was so pleased when I first encountered the term "epistemic helplessness", because it described my own mental state so much of the time. Feeling misunderstood is a hallmark of the emotional experience of the typical teenager, but probably most humans at any stage of life experience this emotion regarding some aspect of who they are. For me, I oftentimes think that the main element behind what routinely causes other people to not relate to me comes down to a state of epistemic helplessness which is fairly dominant in my perception of the outside world. Read more...

Disagreements are like onions II

(or "Why we shouldn't put all our arguments in one rhetorical basket")

...What was I saying? Oh yes, I think all of this can be generalized a little further. In the other post, I suggested that we should make a priority of separating the object level from the meta level, or different "degrees of meta", when analyzing a given disagreement. One obvious challenge that could be raised against this thesis is whether for any two "layers" of an argument one is really more "meta" than the other in some obvious way. Read more...