This is what we were reading over the holidays:
1. Ernest Hemingway, A moveable feast.
We returned to Hemingway’s Paris memoir. (Overall, this was our third reading of Hemingway’s vignettes of his early years in Paris.) Two details struck us this time around: Hemingway’s risky decision to stop working as a journalist in order to devote himself to his real work, and how little writing he actually did in Paris, for he wrote and rewrote most of his first novel in Austria.
2. Roy Sorenson, Thought experiments.
A book-length response to Thomas Kuhn’s essay “A function for thought experiments.”
3. Daniel & Richard Susskind, Transforming the professions.
This father and son team explain how advanced machines like IBM Watson will soon eliminate lawyers, doctors, and accountants (and other professions too), and why this is a good thing!
4. William Pounstone, Labyrinths of reason.
We stumbled upon a copy of this book at a used bookstore in the Mission District in San Francisco (Poundstone is one of our favorite writers), and this particular book of his could be read together with Sorenson’s, as it covers many of the same thought experiments. (It turns out that many thought experiments are about paradoxes.)
5. James A. Harris, Hume: an intellectual autobiography.
We have been wanting to read this tome since Tyler Cowen recommended it to us last year, but we waited in vain for the paperback edition to be released. We just ordered a used edition and started reading it, so we will provide regular updates in future posts.
Update (2/1): We just completed our reading of Harris’s tome on Hume. We will be blogging about his extraordinary book soon.