Category Archives: spiritual humanism

Richard Rorty, rest in peace

A real hero of authentic, human, and humble attempts to figure out how to live and think: Richard Rorty, 1931-2007 Update: J├╝gen Habermas writes the eulogy: …philosophy is there to reconcile the celestial beauty of orchids with Trotsky’s dream of justice on earth. Nothing is sacred to Rorty the ironist. Asked at the end of […]

mass-observation and the internet

An excellent article in the New Yorker recounts that in the U.K., in the thirties, there was a mini-movement called the “Mass-Observation” experiment. Members gathered as much detail about the lives of everyday people as they could, and synthesized it into a series of books (sample details: when a train goes through a tunnel at […]

The Creative Ghetto

So wants to be agency of record for Subway sandwiches, and they decide to make a video for Subway about their team, as a ‘viral video’ that they will upload to YouTube, etc. They make the video, and it’s really sort of sad to watch probably smart and talented people try to graft something […]


In my art history classes in graduate school there was a generalization made by a famous historian, Erwin Panofsky: When a society is out of balance and disorganized, art tends toward the abstract. When the society is balanced and stable, art tends toward naturalism.” — Studies in Iconology, Humanistic Themes in the Art This idea […]

bravery and acceptance

Barnard College Emily Gregory Award 2006, acceptance speech by (my aunt) Amy Trompetter “You were born with your authentic self and your ethical integrity intact. You are moving from innocence to sophistication and deciding what are the realistic compromises that you must make in order to live in this imperfect world that you have inherited […]