Zeno and the Tortoise by Nicholas Fearn
Adam Carter browses through Nicholas Fearn’s introduction to philosophy for bartenders who wear baseball caps.
Zeno and the Tortoise is a large, crafty bag of brilliant tools - Ockham’s razor, for example. Hume’s fork – an academic arsenal of philosophical weapons that are keen for slicing and stabbing through the slippery profoundities of day-to-day decision-making and right into the middle of dinner-party conversations of which you would have otherwise been left out.
With a grade-school like reptile on the cover, Zeno and the Tortoise is not for the PhDs and third-year grad students. It’s a book for the bartender who is sick of hearing those fancy professors stroll in and schmooze for hours about Descartes and Nietzsche, leaving him out of the conversation because he didn’t go to college and wears dirty ball caps. Philosophy, as we know, can be a condescending gig, and because it generally takes years of schooling in the Western intellectual tradition to hold a five-minute conversation on the subject, philosophical chit chat – especially when names are dropped – becomes inherently exclusionary.