Sunday, January 25, 2015
The best books I read in 2014 – philosophy
Given the variety of philosophical books I read last year, it’s surprising that my favorites were written and edited by the same person and dealt with the same subject:
George Yancy, Look, A White!: Philosophical Essays on Whiteness
and George Yancy, ed., What White Looks Like: African-American Philosophers on the Whiteness Question
Both are edited volumes, and so have the typical redundancy and unevenness in quality, and some of the chapters in second volume are…weak. But when they’re good, they’re great. The best philosophy – like the best psychology or history - should help us to look critically at ourselves and our culture, and especially to understand how, often without realizing it, we can be participating in oppression and harming others as well as ourselves. These books are valuable contributions to that humanistic tradition.