Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Phi: An Unprofessional Journal of Philosophy

Greetings fellow students,

"Phi: An Unprofessional Journal of Philosophy" is a new periodical run by
and for graduate students. The point of the journal is to provide a
vehicle to share creative or unusual ideas outside of the usual standards
which can lead to "safe" but boring papers. More details about the goals
of the journal and what we are looking for in a submission can be found at
the end of this email. Copies of the journal will be available in print
(at a cost of around $6 each), and a pdf version will be made available
for free online. The absolute deadline for submissions is January 1st, but
earlier is better. Send your submissions to


Peter Schombert and João Paulo A. Pereira

Mission Statement:

The purpose of this journal is to provide an outlet for philosophical
creativity and to promote the discussion of new ideas. As graduate
students, we are in a process of preparing to become professionals. Thus
every paper we write becomes, in part, a way of cultivating that
professionalism. Often that means developing very modest theses in close
connection with the existing literature. Unfortunately, the development
of these professional skills can come at the cost of creativity,
originality, and boldness, both in form and content. Writing a "safe"
paper usually ends up being a better option than taking on a real
challenge. But creativity, originality, and boldness are just as much
components of good philosophy as professionalism is. We intend for this
journal to be a step towards remedying this problem. Ideally, it will be
a vehicle for developing the creativity of the authors who make
submissions as well as that of the readers who are inspired by its
contents to do creative and original work of their own.

Submission Guidelines:

1) The goal of each submission should be to present some new philosophical
idea, perspective, argument, or theory, but it should not try to be the
last word on the matter. Bear in mind that this is an unprofessional
journal. While you should aim to present your idea convincingly, there is
no need to make your arguments absolutely iron-clad, deal preemptively
with every possible objection, or to refer to every previous philosophical
work that bears some resemblance to your position.

2) Each submission should stand entirely on its own. Every intelligent
person should be able to fully understand your submission with only a
minimum philosophical training. For this reason, citations, quotes, and
other references to material outside the paper are not required - in fact
they are slightly discouraged. Any philosophical positions or problems
that the submission makes reference to should either be explained or be so
widely known that no explanation is necessary.

3) Submissions of every length will receive equal consideration.

4) Although this journal exists primarily for the benefit of philosophy
graduate students, everyone is free to make a submission, and all
submissions will be treated equally.

5) By making a submission, you consent to its publication under the
creative commons license. The version of the license that we are using
allows anyone to redistribute your work, for both commercial and
non-commercial purposes, so long as they attribute it to you and do not
make any alterations to it. As the original author, you retain the right
to make further alterations and to republish it as you see fit. (see