Several people have asked me to make this lecture available online. I'll do in bite sized bits-minus the ad lib stuff, of course. Here's the first installment. I had a wonderful time in the Bluegrass Country. Thanks to all who made it happen, and who came to hear me speak. And thanks especially to Minh Nguyen, Matthew Pianalto, and Bruce McLaren for sharing a beer or two with me afterwards.
I would like to thank the Department of Philosophy and Eastern Kentucky University for the invitation to speak here this evening. I have been invited to talk about a book I wrote a few years ago, The Philosopher and the Wolf. This is the US version.
The book is about many things – not just a philosopher and a wolf. Fundamentally, I suppose, it is a book about growing up. I’ve just finished – a few weeks ago – a sequel of sorts. It’s called Running with the Pack, and it’s book about growing old. I shall also weave elements of that book into this evening’s talk.
The Philosopher and the Wolf is what’s known as a memoir: a book of memories. I shall talk about this book tonight, but I am also going to talk with it. I shall not talk not just about the memories the book contains but use these to examine the idea of memory: of what it is to remember someone. Some people say that it is our memories that make us who we are. Indeed, there is a well-known philosophical theory that says just that: what makes me the person I am, the same person today as I was yesterday, a different person from anyone else – it is my memories that do this. This is known as the memory theory. This evening, I am going to talk about The Philosopher and the Wolf. That is my primary aim. But it is well worth keeping the memory theory in the back of your mind – it is a kind of secondary target.
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