Kitcher: 1, Shafer: 0

Written by

Today’s New York Times Sunday Book Review includes a letter to the editor from philosophy and English professor Philip Kitcher, in which he masterfully corrects Slate overlord Jack Shafer. The latter had hypothetically asked in last week’s review of Roy Blount, Jr.’s Alphabet Juice: “Who before Blount thought to construct a complete conversation using only English vowels?”

Writes Kitcher: “The answer is James Joyce. Almost. The conversation Shafer cites, with the five vowels in order, has a precursor in a sentence from ‘Ulysses.’ In Chapter 9, Stephen Dedalus is meditating on his debt to the writer George Russell, whose pseudonym was AE. Stephen concludes his musings with a five-letter sentence: A.E.I.O.U.”

Tags: , , ,


  1. Hmmm.  

    I could have a convo online that goes like this:

    Me: I?
    Other person: U!
    Me: Aaa!!!
    Other person: Oooo

  2. philip kitcher

    is awesome reply to this if you down

  3. Philip Kitcher  

    is a superhero.

  4. please enjoy  

    this footage of the brain gremlin from gremlins 2: the new batch.

  5. philip kitcher  

    is my hero!

  6. wait  

    howwwwww is this even possibly a cool thing to do? i'm sorry, can we get back to the real world now and stop shitting ourselves over this guy just cause he hasn't left an office in 40 years? showing off about how much joyce you've read in the sunday book review is behavior we should not encourage.

  7. re:wait

    he's not showing off. he's teaching a class this semester on joyce.

© 2006-2015 Blue and White Publishing Inc.