2013-06-07

Philosophy: a Go-to-market Plan!

My comments on this article.
I talk about this a lot, sometimes, and it tickles me to jump back into it. Haha. This is really a meta-philosophy problem. In terms of metaphysics... we are indeed concerned with communicating the "what it is," of philosophy to a consumer market. As to how we communicate it, therein we have a simple question of choosing the right language.

Anyone seeking to market philosophy to the masses must therefore understand both the language of the masses, and the ontology of the discipline which we currently refer to as philosophy (or Philosophy if you must fuss).

Personally, I think the simplest approach to determining the ontology of Philosophy from a pragmatic point of view is to consider the practice of Philosophy, and its domains. We can (practically) articulate at which points in history some subset of Philosophy's domain got hewn off and chucked under another discipline (or department) whose scope was narrower than that of Philosophy. For example, Law, Physics, and Psychology are among the simplest examples of this. What we then find is that by subtracting all the domains of more specific disciplines, we are then left with particular methods which are SPECIFIC to the discipline of Philosophy, as it stands today. (Again, this is a practical approach, not one intended to be a MECE thesis.) This roughly leaves Philosophy to be defined as: the study of logic, and the application of the dialectic method. (Feel free to add in whatever you feel may be missing from your home brew - I'm just espousing my home brew meta-philosophy.)

Since graduating with a major in Philosophy in 2005, I've worked in the business sector, and found that the practice of Philosophy seems most similar to the business disciplines of risk management (applied skepticism), and management consulting (hard questions, analytical methods, creative responses).

In general, Philosophy as a discipline may sometimes be structured as "ethics", "metaphysics", and "epistemology" - corresponding to the questions of "what should we do," "what are we talking about," and "how sure are we". These of course, once translated, place Philosophy as just a boffin's name for practices that are applied by managers of modern commerce everywhere.

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