Fordham’s Stephen Grimm is running a major research project looking at what it means to understand things, why we care about it, that kind of thing. At some level this is bread and butter for philosophers, but Dr. Grimm’s project is doing this from a lot of different disciplines’ perspectives – not just philosophy but psychology, the hard sciences, and some other things I’m sure I don’t even know about. It’s a very neat (and very ambitious) project.
This interview with 3 AM is really interesting, for a few reasons. First, it gives a nice overview of Dr. Grimm’s project, which I don’t think I really understood until reading it. At least not in the depth I do now. On top of that, there’s the fact that Dr. Grimm is very good at talking with non-experts. He doesn’t put a lot of jargon into his answers, and while some of his answers will definitely stretch your brain –in a good way, I hope!– I don’t think it feels like you’re going back to school or being talked past. So if you’re interested in what philosophers (and by extension philosophy grad students) actually get up to, it’s definitely worth checking out. And finally, that grad class he mentions at the tail end of the article? I had the pleasure to sit in on it this term. So for the family and friends who care about such things, I have a personal connection, however faint, to a major magazine. Makes me feel just a little more important than I did this morning.
Do check it out. It’s a great read if you’re interested in the topic.