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Ender's Game and Philosophy: Genocide Is Child's Play (Popular Culture and Philosophy) Paperback – September 17, 2013

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About the Author

D. E. Wittkower is assistant professor of Philosophy at Old Dominion University. Lucinda Rush is the Education Reference Librarian at Old Dominion University. She holds M.A. in Library & Information Science and Music Education.
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Product Details

  • Series: Popular Culture and Philosophy (Book 80)
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Open Court (September 17, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812698347
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812698343
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #906,223 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I teach courses on philosophy of technology at Old Dominion University, and write on technology, digital culture, ethics, business, and the philosophy of everyday life and popular culture. I also freelance for Speakeasy, culture blog of the Wall Street Journal, and Slate's Future Tense.

Bio:
D.E. Wittkower received a Ph.D in Philosophy from Vanderbilt University in 2006. His training concentrated on German philosophy and the history of value theory (ethics, aesthetics, social/political philosophy). His research has concentrated on Philosophy of Technology and Applied Philosophy--exploring the intersection of New Media Theory, Political Philosophy, Ethics, and 19th and 20th century Continental and American philosophy. Prior to accepting the position of Assistant Professor at Old Dominion University, he taught at Coastal Carolina University, Sweet Briar College, Virginia Tech, University of Missouri - St. Louis, and University of Maine - Orono. He is Phi Beta Kappa, and was given the 2011 Award for Distinguished Teaching by the CCU College of Humanities and Fine Arts.

Current research concentrates on Facebook, personal relationships, and community, with some additional projects underway on kickstarter, new media pedagogy, the value of boredom, and the strange prominence of bacon in online culture. Recent publications concern topics including Philip K. Dick, the phenomenology of audiobook listening, the role of the cute in digital culture, and copyright in e-business.

In addition to the books listed here, he has contributed to *The Unlike Us Reader* (Institute of Network Cultures, 2013), *Putting Knowledge to Work and Letting Information Play* (Springer, 2012), *Applying Care Ethics to Business* (Springer, forthcoming 2011), *Audiobooks, Literature, and Sound Studies* (Routledge, 2011), *Learning Through Digital Media (Institute for Distributed Creativity, 2011), *Sherlock Holmes and Philosophy* (Open Court, 2011), *Anime and Philosophy* (Open Court, 2010), *Ethical Issues in E-Business* (IGI Global, 2010), and *Radiohead and Philosophy* (Open Court, 2009); and author of articles appearing in *Techné*, *International Review of Information Ethics*, *APA Newsletter on Computers and Philosophy*, *Social Identities*, and *Fast Capitalism*.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Amazed.

Hats off to Open Court for what has to be one of the best books in the popular culture and philosophy genre I've ever come across. Not without some reservations, nevertheless, this one went right out of the ballpark.

I must confess I approached this book with no small amount of trepidation. I reviewed competitor Wiley-Blackwell's book on "Ender's Game" back on July 27, 2013. (Both books are heralds for the upcoming movie adaptation of Orson Scott Card's novel.) A solid effort on their part (four stars), but not as good as this book. This book hits the bulleye because of its broad coverage of philosophical material. Having read Wiley-Blackwell's entry back in July, I wondered whether the essays in Open Court's offering would cover the same exact topics. Fear not. This book could easily be used as a recommended book in an introductory philosophy class. If there was anything that I frowned upon, it was the lack of more instances of solid grounding in mentioning philosophers when developing ideas. Philosophers were mentioned, but not always. Although Wiley-Blackwell does a better job of grounding its essays by mentioning philosophers and their works, their "Ender's Game" suffered from repetitive topics and typographical errors (read my review on Amazon). As for this book's editor, D.E. Wittkower, we were thankfully spared the "curse of the book's editor". Wittkower's essay looked at sympathy and empathy as being necessary for soldiers. How can a soldier know when to "turn it on", so to speak, and when not? Plato's "Republic", Hume's "Treatise of Human Nature", and Ronald Arkin's article in the "Journal of Military Ethics" (who knew there was such a thing?) were mentioned. I questioned the use of Philip K.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steve Moore on December 6, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Good sci-fi stories are often morality plays. That’s what made the original version of Star Trek exciting and revolutionary—many of the stories, often lifted from sci-fi literature—focused a spotlight on moral issues by reducing them to their bare essence. Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card, is an example of a novel-length morality play that contains many moral ambiguities, as analyzed in this collection of philosophical articles.

I found the articles very readable, entertaining, and informative but often wondered if the writers were over-thinking and/or second-guessing Mr. Card. I was reminded of my English class long ago with N. Scott Momaday when I could ace his TA’s quizzes simply by mentioning something Freudian. One can say, though, that at least no article here has become a launching platform for a PhD in philosophy…so far.

One issue that came to the fore before the release of the movie was Card’s homophobia and stand against same-sex marriage. That prompted me to write a blog post suggesting that a writer’s political or cultural views shouldn’t matter if he tells a good story. Ender’s Game is one helluva story, after all. But the article “How Queer is Ender?”, by Michaud and Watkins, treats this issue. They argue, for example, that the novel is really about Card’s gender bias and how homosexual love between males should never be consummated. I’ll leave this to the experts but modestly opine that they’re over-thinking a good story—I read the book shortly after it received the Nebula Award (it also received the Hugo Award a year later) and saw an analogy with male-only military prep schools and academies, but more along the lines of stresses induced by a competitive, testosterone-charged environment. Maybe I’m naïve.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. H. on December 3, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Item as described. Would use seller again.
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