Philosophy Majors

According to Socrates, the unexamined life is not worth living. He should have also added that examining life won't earn you a living unless you want to teach philosophy. (N.B. Socrates was condemned to death for teaching philosophy.)

So you want to major in Philosophy...

Just The Facts

  1. The word 'philosophy' comes from the Greek words for 'love' (phil) and 'wisdom' (sophi). Those same roots can be found in the words 'pedophile' and 'sophist' (which are also accurate descriptions of Socrates).

Famous Philosophy Majors

Harrison Ford (wiser than Yoda, but not as rich as Lucas)

Steve Martin (bullshit artist)

Gene Siskel (now in heaven watching his favorite movie, Saturday Night Fever, for all eternity)

Susan Sontag (feminist troublemaker)

George Soros (billionaire leftist troublemaker)

Alex Trebek (professional know-it-all)

David Foster Wallace (MacArthur genius, now in hell for committing suicide, forced to watch Saturday Night Fever with Gene Siskel for all eternity)

Angela Davis (Black Panther and communist)

Thomas Jefferson (slave owner and colonial troublemaker)

Robert MacNamara (only minored in philosophy, real sorry for that whole Viet Nam war thing)

David Souter (confirmed bachelor and dissappointment to Republicans)

Mary Higgins Clark (Angela Lansbury impersonator)

Ethan Coen (makes movies that mess with your head)

Umberto Eco (writes books that mess with your head)

Ken Follett (writes really long books)

Phil Jackson (Michael Jordan's former boss)

(Please note that none of these people are famous for being philosophers, except for maybe Steve Martin.)

So you want to major in Philosophy...Why? (cont'd.)

Atlas Shrugged is my favorite book.
Do you think Ayn Rand was a philosopher?
Yes:
Do you want to keep thinking she was?
Yes: Major in something else.
No: Welcome to the Philosophy Department!
No: Major in something else.
I want to get laid.
Are you bi-curious?
No: Major in something else.
Yes: Welcome to the Philosophy Department!
I want to know the meaning of life.
Have you seen Monty Python's The Meaning of Life?
Yes: Major in something else.
No: Rent it and then major in something else.
My favorite actor/comedian/political leader majored in philosophy.
Do you really think a philosophy degree was the key to his/her success?
No: Major in something else.
Yes: Welcome to the Philosophy Department!
I want to win arguments with my future wife.
Do you think it's possible to actually win an argument with a woman (even if you're right)?
No: Major in something else.
Yes: Welcome to the Philosophy Department!
All the other majors were taken at my A-choice of college.
Will they let you change majors after a semester or two?
No: Go with your B-choice and then major in something else.
Yes: Welcome to the Philosophy Department!
I think Rawls' notion of Justice as Fairness is the most compelling justification for a liberal society.
Do you want to hang out with people who know what that means (even if it means nobody else will talk to you)?
No: Major in something else.
Yes: Welcome to the Philosophy Department!
The Matrix Trilogy are my favorite movies.
Do you think the Wachowski brothers know jack-shit about philosophy?
No: Major in something else.
Yes: Do you want to hold on to that belief?
Yes: Major in something else.
No: Welcome to the Philosophy Department!