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View Full Version : HAs anyone else read Baseball and Philosophy?


Dadawg_77
06-30-2004, 10:23 AM
http://www.baseball-almanac.com/books/baseball_and_philosophy.shtml


It is a pretty good book.

Philo-Sox-er
06-30-2004, 12:00 PM
I haven't finished it all, yet, as I have been very busy. I am very familiar with the series as a whole, and I think it is good within that context. However, as someone who has written about baseball and philosophy, I think it is not very good. It has its strong points, but many weak ones. Nevertheless, worth reading.

Dadawg_77
06-30-2004, 01:12 PM
I haven't finished it all, yet, as I have been very busy. I am very familiar with the series as a whole, and I think it is good within that context. However, as someone who has written about baseball and philosophy, I think it is not very good. It has its strong points, but many weak ones. Nevertheless, worth reading.
I just started it, read the stats chapter first (imagine that) but what do you think its weak points are?

Philo-Sox-er
06-30-2004, 01:29 PM
I should qualify my declaration of the book's shortcomings by saying firstly that they come largely from the fact that I am a philosophy teacher and, hence, I foudn the philosophy they used to be philosophy-lite (i.e., watered down). So for those who care less about complicated philosophical systems, etc., my complaints likely merrit little concern admittedly.

On that note, however, I think that they neglected to utilize all the precious philosophical resources baseball has. For example, though they make mention of A. Bartlett Giamatti (especially in the Pete Rose debates), the ignore his brilliant work "Take Time for Paradise" in which he offers some truly insightful philosophically interesting dimensions to the game. Or how little they mentioned Yogi Berra! He is a walking Zen koan! They barely made mention of Casey Stengel if I recall correctly (been a few months since I read it)! None of the authors had a good knowledge of the history of baseball, or if they did, they didn't have a knack for picking out the philosophically interesting people, events, etc. that are inherent in baseball.

Finally, and most importantly, the chapter on the Cubs fans and faith made me want to vomit. I couldn't agree more, baseball wise or philosophically.

I am currently co-authoring a book on baseball and philosophy (not sure about title yet), in which we are critiquing this very much. I have an entirely different view of the relationship between baseball and philosophy and religion than is expressed in the "Baseball and Philosophy" text. That might be as a result of it being compiled of many authors' essay of course.

I still think it is good for people to read the book in question. However, I suggest the following (though again I have my points of contention, it is a better book in my opinion): The Faith of 50 Million: Baseball, Religion, and American Culture, edited by Christopher Evans and William Herzog.

I'd like ot hear your thoughts on the text after you read it DADAWG. It will be fun for me to see what everyone else thinks on the topic.

DSpivack
06-30-2004, 11:50 PM
I know this doesn't really have to do with anything, but I love Yogi Berra! Pick up his book of quotes, it's a great read.