Hello reader. Nice to meet you.
A kind of welcome message is probably in order – both for you and for myself. This is my first WordPress, and my first attempt at blogging altogether, so by setting out my intentions here I hope to help us both get clearer on what to expect from this blog.
‘Classics’. ‘Political Thought’. The ‘Humanities’. If you, the reader, thought these are a rather ill-defined collection of barely related subjects – you are right! The challenge for me was to come up with a title that adequately captures all interests and hobbies I’ve had over the past years: from ancient history to film; from Russian to psychoanalysis; from political philosophy to drama.
I have two reasons for trying to throw all of these together.
One is simply because I have fun in thinking and writing about stuff, and people who have known me for a little bit are aware of (and often complain about) the fact that I write about a wide variety of stuff. So in a sense, this blog is a continuation of what I have always been doing, and what I’ve always enjoyed doing: annoying the world with just another opinion on this or that.
The second reason – and this is a more ‘serious’ reason – is because I have historically been very bad at letting go of old passions, while my education up to the present day has been in part a process of ‘narrowing down’. The point of this blog (one of the points of this blog) is to serve as a counterweight to my education. This is not because I think my education is bad, or has taught me the wrong things, or doesn’t allow me enough freedom – but because it is an inevitable aspect of any education to focus one’s activities into a manageable area of expertise.
By starting up this blog, I am not claiming to be an expert in the wide range of subjects flagged up in the subtitle. What I am claiming is that I’m a student of methodology and the philosophy of science: I like to think about how subject-area A intersects and interacts with subject-area B. One way of reading this blog, therefore, is as an experiment in combining issues, insights and themes from a number of seemingly unrelated areas. Again, your probable response of confusion to seeing Classics, Political Thought and the Humanities grouped together is exactly right – but it is a response that I wish (us) to reflect upon. Why, and where, are these areas different? How can they illuminate one another? How successful have historical attempts been to bring them together? Is it possible to write a blog on ‘Classics, Political Thought, and the Humanities’?
This blog is the laboratory in which I experiment with ideas I can’t (yet) bring to my academic work. But this also allows me to write in a much more personal way. This is not just a platform for abstract discussion with difficult words. It also provides, I hope, something of possible interest for the casual reader. I will try to signal in my posts where and when delving into the theory is necessary, so that readers can choose to skip this – or not.
There is at least one advantage to be gained here, even if none of this will ever be read by anyone: my random and unsolicited stream of reflections on Facebook will stop to clutter up your news feed. You are welcome (2x).