After more than 30 years as a professional philosopher, I have come to fear that we sell philosophy short if we treat it only as an academic pursuit. If philosophy has nothing to say about the day-to-day conduct of life, it has lost its way.

This blog is dedicated to the idea that philosophy is not only an academic discipline but a practical discipline that provides the intellectual foundations and motivations for a life well lived. This idea was prominent among ancient Greek and Roman philosophers, but it retreated as Christianity gained ascendance, and philosophy increasingly became a purely theoretical enterprise eventually to be housed only in academic institutions. Despite that retreat, there have been voices throughout history singing a different tune—most notably, Montaigne, Nietzsche, Bergson, the existentialists, and the pragmatists—who have kept this idea alive. Today there is an emerging robust discourse about philosophy as a way of life that I wish to join.

I aim to discover a style of philosophical writing that avoids name-dropping, inside baseball, and methodological debates and that uses theory sparingly as a means of enhancing life.

For more discussion of the reasons why this issue has become salient today, see The Manifesto.

My name is Dwight Furrow, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at San Diego Mesa College. My CV is available here. Most of my recent writing is on the philosophy of food and wine, a very practical topic indeed. For more on these topics, visit my blog Edible Arts or consult Beauty and the Yeast: A Philosophy of Wine, Life, and Love and American Foodie: Taste, Art, and the Cultural Revolution.