In this issue of TPM, Teresa Blankmeyer Burke reviews Sound of Metal, a movie about a drummer who loses his hearing. As a Deaf woman—the first ever to receive a PhD in philosophy—Burke notices what others may not. She writes that the movie is a hearing person’s imagining of what it’s like to become deaf—a problem exacerbated by the fact that a hearing actor plays the lead role. Nevertheless, she writes, the movie brings up complex questions about the nature of disability and the value of different kinds of assimilation.
Also concerned with loss of sensation, Jean Kazez discusses the way Covid-19 has resulted in persistent smell and taste loss for some people who otherwise recover. Philosophy habitually downgrades these senses, and even sometimes sensation in general. That makes it especially striking how devastating these patients find their losses.
Our book reviewers in this issue are noticeably enthusiastic about the books they discuss. Rachel Handley is effusive about Cheryl Misak’s biography of the philosopher and mathematician Frank Ramsey. Katja Behrens is fascinated by C. Thi Nguyen’s innovative book Games: Agency as Art. And Russell Blackford applauds Justin Tosi and Brandon Warmke for their complex analysis of moral-showoffs in their book Grandstanding.