Monday, August 04, 2008

Deep summer

Sorry not to have posted for a bit (though, come to think of it, I wonder if anyone really minds). I will get back to Aristotle NE 10.4 and Plato Philebus soon, at least when I have something constructive worked out to say. But for now I thought it might be interesting (for me, at least) to catalogue what I'm up to at the moment.

Big job #1 is putting together the Cambridge Companion to Epicureanism. At the moment I'm putting together the big bibliography at the end and being surprised by how tricky it is to get the formatting right and how common it is to get two contributors citing the same thing but assigning different years of publication or some such. It's boring stuff but the end is in sight. Then I have to go back through the chapters and make sure the 'Bloggs (2001a)'s are right and the 'Bloggs (2001b)'s are right. And then it's on to getting the references to papyri all sorted... I think it will be a good volume when it's done.

Big job #2 is examining a PhD. I end up writing long reports - perhaps too long - but I find that the best way to make sure I'm thinking properly about what I'm reading.

Then, not yet underway, big job #3 is writing new lectures for next academic year. The major set that's new next year will be 4 lectures on Plato's Crito. I read this as a starting Greek text in my first year as an undergraduate and it's good to look back at it. I'm also going to try to introduce some more general philosophical questions about disobedience, the extent to which people are obliged to obey the law, and what the obligations are if a citizen objects to a law.

Smaller jobs include #4 finishing a paper on Cicero's first Tusculan disputation and #5 polishing my paper on Plutarch's Non posse after I gave it in Oxford. The first of these is, I hope, going to appear in a collection of interesting things on the philosophy of death. Not sure what will happen to the second, but while I still have some thoughts about it I had better get them incorporated.

A-level results are out soon so I will start to think about organising college teaching next year, and I in any case had better get going with arranging teaching for my returning students. Then there are always graduate students around and interesting books to read and thoughts buzzing about other things. These are not so much jobs, though, so I had better list them differently:

Indulgence #6 is a developing paper on Sextus M 10 and an argument about why god cannot be wise and yet not feel pain (and therefore be perishable). This is tricky and has got me reading round other arguments over the necessity of first-person experience for certain kinds of knowledge, particularly what it is like to experience pain. The indulgence #7 is my very early-days thoughts about NE 10.4 and the Philebus.

Now I think about it, putting this list together is a useful way of working out what to do first... And then again, there is always failblog to waste my time for me. This is my recent favourite (click for a clearer image):

1 comment:

Winchester whisperer said...

Ah the Crito! Do you think Socrates would have been just as famous had he not been executed or did his death make him a martyr?