Tag: intellectual biography

What is theory? Stefan Collini argues that “‘theory’ is what happens when common starting-points can no longer be taken for granted”. If there’s any truth to this suggestion, it points towards the irrevocably social nature of theory. The inclination to address a question in a theoretical way, the variability with which different parties will approach the same question, point […]

Earlier this week at Computational Social Science 2014, I heard Gene Stanley, an affable and rather polymathic physicist, reflect on his experience of collaborating with economists. He was concerned to make clear the different skill sets that physicists and economists bring to collaborative work, with each able to do things which the other can’t. But what really caught […]

If one stands back from the day-to-day demands of professional routine, it becomes clear that an intellectual trajectory is not organised in advance, we do not begin by surveying the intellectual ground before deciding upon a line of enquiry; rather, as Hans-Georg Gadamer might put it, we fall into conversation; our starting points are accidental, […]