Wednesday, May 19, 2021

The first date book walk out meme


Nicholas Kenyon’s New History Of Western Music

The book’s subtitle, New Adventures in the Western Classical Tradition,makes its soft boundaries clear. As managing director of London’s Barbican Centre, and former director of the Proms, controller of Radio 3 andmusic critic of the Observer – and therefore a colleague and friend to those of us in the business of classical – Kenyon has heard and programmed as much music as anyone. – The Guardian

The first date book walk out meme

Michele W. (citing @ogbrenna) asked on Twitter:

You’re on a first date with someone, and they tell you the name of their favorite book. You immediately leave. What’s the book?

This caused Atlas Shrugged to trend, and The Biblewas another popular response.  It is striking to me how, with a simple change of setting, and a shift in the mood affiliation of the example, how discrimination on the basis of religion suddenly is glorified and celebrated.  Funny how few cited The Quran, or for that matter “The Hebrew Bible,” albeit for two very different reasons.

(By the way, I’ve been going around to many San Francisco book stores, and none of them carry the new Sarah Ruden translation of The Gospels, which is likely a significant work.  I could feel people looking down on me as I asked for it.  Part of me wanted to say “But this is Sarah Ruden,” but that would be making the problem only worse.  Since I did not feel tempted to say “But this is God,” perhaps I am part of the problem.)

Why not email a bit with a potential date beforehand, if such matters are so important?  Or is this meme a simple, never-to-be-enacted revenge fantasy for those who don’t quite have the options they might ideally prefer?

One thing the contemporary world definitely has not come to terms with is how much a highly feminized culture will be (rather strongly) enforcing new forms of discrimination, albeit cloaked under different and rhetorically emancipatory principles.

Addendum: Here is a statistics variant.

  1. Learning about virtue by studying the “difference between cultivating and controlling disgust” — Charlie Kurth (WMU) on the moral value of disgust
  2. “The highest honorary position in German Protestantism” has been given to a 25-year-old who majored in philosophy — Anna-Nicole Heinrich is the new chair of the Synod of the Evangelical Church in Germany (via Adrian Kind)
  3. “Is it fortune cookies or a tractatus, a mantra or a rich, textured, and open-ended philosophical program?” — Daniel Little (UM-Dearborn) on whether Seneca has a system of philosophy
  4. On the moral status of animals, Kantian moral philosophy in practice, and altruism — a brief interview with Christine Korsgaard (Harvard) by Erich Grunewald
  5. Personal transformation and practical reason — a conversation with Agnes Callard (Chicago) and Laurie Paul (Yale)
  6. “To reject demonization is to attempt to understand what every other human being does as something you might have done yourself” — an interview with Samuel Fleishacker on a range of topics, including empathy, Adam Smith, ethics, philosophy of religion, and more
  7. “Appropriate caution in philosophy can become timidity in politics” — Julian Baggini on Hume and the need to supplement the skeptical wisdom of conservatism with progressive skepticism about the status Quo