What we're about

This group usually has two meeting each month, with different themes. The original Philosophy Cafe meets on the 3rd Sunday of every month, 4-6 pm, at the Town & Country Barnes and Noble. The second subgroup meets on the first Sunday of each month, 3-5 pm, also at the same Barnes and Noble. Both groups discuss primary works of philosophy (works by the philosophers themselves). We are affiliated with Houston Great Books and try to follow "Shared Inquiry" discussion guidelines: please read or attempt to read the selection before the meeting so that our conversation can focus mainly on what the author we're reading is saying. At the meetings we engage in close reading; that's how we get the most out of what the text actually says (and not what we've heard, perhaps, about the philosopher).

We are amateurs and encourage participation by anyone interested. Nonetheless, we have been doing this for a number of years, so you can expect some knowledge (though irregular) of philosophy and philosophical texts.

Upcoming events (4+)

Seeing Things as They Are, John Searle

Needs a location

We will be reading John Searles's Seeing Things as They Are: A Theory of Perception until we finish!

We meet on the first Sunday of every month, from 3-5 pm.

We always welcome new participants. Our preferred approach is close reading -- a paragraph-by-paragraph attempt to work through the text together. We don't cover a lot of space each month, but we've found this suits us just fine.

We are amateurs at this, so all that's required to participate is a genuine interest. We're also a Great Books group, and although we don't follow their method exactly, all the time, (http://www.houstongreatbooks.net/resources.html), we try to stick to clarifying the text itself. Any questions or insights about the text are welcome; any outside material that takes the place of the text for the most part isn't. Since we all have some exposure to philosophy, and have our own ideas about philosophy, we ask that any such ideas that you want to introduce be directly relevant, and your own, in the sense that you aren't appealing to authority (Kant's, for example, or a religious text). Although we often bring in examples, and these are helpful, we try to limit examples to those that are directly relevant to the text. In other words, we try to follow the text, and any conclusions we might try to introduce should be conclusions drawn from the text and what it says.

It should be a conversation, starting with genuine questions about what the text says , rather than a lecture by anyone about what he or she thinks, believes, or has concluded. We're interested in what the author thought and said.

Please join us for a discussion! If you have any questions, please contact Bill.

Note that our meeting time is now 3-5 pm.

Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit

Needs a location

We have been engaged in a slow, careful reading of Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit for a number of years. (Yes, we are moving that slowly.)

We always welcome new participants. The Phenomenology is available online: http://www.faculty.umb.edu/gary_zabel/Courses/Marxist_Philosophy/Hegel_and_Feuerbach_files/Hegel-Phenomenology-of-Spirit.pdf.

Our preferred approach is close reading -- a paragraph-by-paragraph attempt to work through the text together. We don't cover a lot of space each month, but we've found this suits us just fine.

We are amateurs at this, so all that's required to participate is a genuine interest. However, because we've done this (and other philosophy discussions) for years, and we are active, engaged readers. We are also aware of the difficulties Hegel presents for those unfamiliar with his work (as well as difficulties with his philosophy itself) so we aim to be encouraging and supportive to newcomers.

We're also a Great Books group, and although we don't follow their method exactly, all the time, (http://www.houstongreatbooks.net/resources.html), we try to stick to clarifying the text itself. Any questions or insights about the text are welcome; any outside material that takes the place of the text for the most part isn't. Since we all have some exposure to philosophy, and have our own ideas about philosophy, we ask that any such ideas that you want to introduce be directly relevant, and your own, in the sense that you aren't appealing to authority (Kant's, for example, or a religious text). Although we often bring in examples, and these are helpful, we try to limit examples to those that are directly relevant to the text. In other words, we try to follow the text, and any conclusions, questions, frames, etc., we might try to introduce should be drawn from or based on the text and what it says.

It should be a conversation, starting with genuine questions about what the text says , rather than a lecture by anyone about what he or she thinks, believes, or has concluded. We're interested in what the author thought and said.

Please join us for a discussion! If you have any questions, please contact Bill.

Seeing Things as They Are, John Searle

Needs a location

We will be reading John Searles's Seeing Things as They Are: A Theory of Perception until we finish!

We meet on the first Sunday of every month, from 3-5 pm.

We always welcome new participants. Our preferred approach is close reading -- a paragraph-by-paragraph attempt to work through the text together. We don't cover a lot of space each month, but we've found this suits us just fine.

We are amateurs at this, so all that's required to participate is a genuine interest. We're also a Great Books group, and although we don't follow their method exactly, all the time, (http://www.houstongreatbooks.net/resources.html), we try to stick to clarifying the text itself. Any questions or insights about the text are welcome; any outside material that takes the place of the text for the most part isn't. Since we all have some exposure to philosophy, and have our own ideas about philosophy, we ask that any such ideas that you want to introduce be directly relevant, and your own, in the sense that you aren't appealing to authority (Kant's, for example, or a religious text). Although we often bring in examples, and these are helpful, we try to limit examples to those that are directly relevant to the text. In other words, we try to follow the text, and any conclusions we might try to introduce should be conclusions drawn from the text and what it says.

It should be a conversation, starting with genuine questions about what the text says , rather than a lecture by anyone about what he or she thinks, believes, or has concluded. We're interested in what the author thought and said.

Please join us for a discussion! If you have any questions, please contact Bill.

Note that our meeting time is now 3-5 pm.

Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit

Needs a location

We have been engaged in a slow, careful reading of Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit for a number of years. (Yes, we are moving that slowly.)

We always welcome new participants. The Phenomenology is available online: http://www.faculty.umb.edu/gary_zabel/Courses/Marxist_Philosophy/Hegel_and_Feuerbach_files/Hegel-Phenomenology-of-Spirit.pdf.

Our preferred approach is close reading -- a paragraph-by-paragraph attempt to work through the text together. We don't cover a lot of space each month, but we've found this suits us just fine.

We are amateurs at this, so all that's required to participate is a genuine interest. However, because we've done this (and other philosophy discussions) for years, and we are active, engaged readers. We are also aware of the difficulties Hegel presents for those unfamiliar with his work (as well as difficulties with his philosophy itself) so we aim to be encouraging and supportive to newcomers.

We're also a Great Books group, and although we don't follow their method exactly, all the time, (http://www.houstongreatbooks.net/resources.html), we try to stick to clarifying the text itself. Any questions or insights about the text are welcome; any outside material that takes the place of the text for the most part isn't. Since we all have some exposure to philosophy, and have our own ideas about philosophy, we ask that any such ideas that you want to introduce be directly relevant, and your own, in the sense that you aren't appealing to authority (Kant's, for example, or a religious text). Although we often bring in examples, and these are helpful, we try to limit examples to those that are directly relevant to the text. In other words, we try to follow the text, and any conclusions, questions, frames, etc., we might try to introduce should be drawn from or based on the text and what it says.

It should be a conversation, starting with genuine questions about what the text says , rather than a lecture by anyone about what he or she thinks, believes, or has concluded. We're interested in what the author thought and said.

Please join us for a discussion! If you have any questions, please contact Bill.

Past events (187)

Hegel's Encyclopedia Phenomenology

This event has passed

Photos (78)