Friday, December 23, 2011

Star Trek and Philosophy: The Wrath of Kant

Title: Star Trek and Philosophy: The Wrath of Kant
Author: various, edited by Jason T. Eberl and Kevin S. Decker
Publication Date: August 2008
Length: 288 pages


OK, that came out a little harsh. It's not that the book is really terrible or anything. It's just so long, and so much philosophy! I have a minor in philosophy, actually, so you'd think I'd like that kind of thing, but for some reason I just kept falling asleep. I've been working on this book in between other books for many months.

I think part of what kept this book from being as awesome as it should have been for me was the audience (or lack thereof) that the various authors were writing for. Most of them bored me with their explanations of first-year philosophy concepts (understandably, as they probably weren't writing for the philosophy-studying crowd), but then other essays left my head spinning, and not in a wow-you-just-blew-my-mind! kind of way, but in an I-have-no-clue-what-you-just-said kind of way.

To be fair, some of the essays were really cool. My favourite was the last one in the book, Harry Mudd Always Lies by Jerry Kapus. It's about logic, and how our whole concept of logic and truth gets thrown off my statements like "This sentence is not true." Crazy! I've decided logic is definitely my favourite type of philosophy.

There is some really interesting philosophy in Star Trek. The show dealt with almost every important issue imaginable, and really gets you questioning a lot of your philosophical ideas. So, the ideas for these essays were great. Most of them just didn't do anything for me. It was as if they were just brushing the surface of all the interesting questions.

I would recommend maybe reading one essay at a time from this book, picking ones that interest you, rather than trying to read the whole book through.

2 stars, and I can't believe I'm doing that to a Star Trek-related book.


  1. Thanks for pointing me to your review....Now you've got me thinking. Maybe I should have started this one a little sooner this year so I could have read an essay here and an essay there. Better move it up to next in line so I can at least space it out a little bit in the remaining months.

    1. I think that's a good idea. It can be a bit overwhelming all at once!