Philosophy and the Marketplace: Introduction


Whilst natural scientists have forged close links with industry, economists—in their capacity as consultants—with private enterprise, and psychologists with the burgeoning market for counselling services, philosophers have shown little eagerness to “ply their trade” in any commercial form whatsoever. Indeed, the very juxtaposition of concepts like “philosophy,” “money,” and “the marketplace” may already have raised eyebrows or induced mocking smirks. The image of this unworldly species assuming a commercial role comparable in scope or nature to that of practitioners of other disciplines is scarcely imaginable. Thus, the peculiar nature of philosophy—its “subject matter,” “method,” or “corpus of knowledge”—provides one reason for prima facie scepticism. The advent of philosophical counselling in both Europe and America during the last decade may well shake such scepticism. It is primarily with this development that the authors in this volume of Philosophy in the Contemporary World deal.

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