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topic for a Meetup?

Deborah B.
MsAnalytical
Berkeley, CA
Post #: 13
In this season of giving, how about self-interest? Self-interest generally = focus on the needs or desires/interests of oneself. I would extend that to include the group/organization (a type of "moral agent") self-interest, so a nonprofit organization may operate according to self-interest if a consideration is continuation or expansion of funding, regardless of the greater good. Per Wikipedia: types of self-interest include:
• Individualism, a philosophy stressing the worth of individual selves
• Psychological egoism, the view that humans are always motivated by self-interest
• Ethical egoism, the ethical position that moral agents ought to do what is in their own self-interest
• Rational egoism
• Hedonism, the school of ethics which argues that pleasure is the only intrinsic good.
o Epicureanism (basically, hedonism)
• Enlightened self-interest, a philosophy which states that acting to further the interests of others also serves one's own self-interest
Jeff G
Ulrich
Oakland, CA
Post #: 110
I just listened to a very good podcast on Nietzsche's early, unpublished (by him) essay, "On Truth and Lies in a Nonmoral Sense." I think this would be a great topic for us, in the "intensive" Study format. While the essay is only nine pages long and available on the web, the way the discussion unfolded on The Partially-Examined Life's sixty-first episode illustrates what kind of pitfalls might be avoided by a group "reading" of what some consider a seminal work. Listening to the two-hour discussion (past the first 10 minutes of general goofiness), one cannot fail to notice that the guest, Jessica Barry from Georgia State University, was the only one not trying to read into the essay support for other positions, usually those of people who came after Nietzsche. THAT is exactly the "Presenter" role as I envision it. In particular, at about 1:40 in, the 4 hosts go on for 4 minutes on the postmodern interpretation before she finally interrupts. So while we might not *need* a meeting, I think we could accomplish a reading of what is actually there in well under 2 hours, and have separated the spin from the meat of the essay. This would be an good opportunity to test out the "Reader" role, because someone could read it in advance. I would still draw up a concept map (I still haven't actually read the essay).

This was my first exposure to The Partially-Examined Life, the "angle" of which is that the hosts (who are in different cities, and some of whom had not yet met at the time of this episode) are not trained philosophy professionals invite an expert to discuss a particular work. Notwithstanding my comments above, I thought it was worth my time. I think it presents a pretty high bar for what a "reading group" could be, as it made me wonder how much editing goes into the podcast.

Nietzsche on Truth
available on iTunes
Our past meetup on Bergson's Laughter essay
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