2019-02Discussion Papers, Comments, Book Reviews
On the Lookout for the Dark Arts and Finding Our Better Selves in Another white Man’s Burden


/Review: Tommy J. Curry, Another white Man’s Burden: Josiah Royce’s Quest for a Philosophy of white Racial Empire (Albany: SUNY Press, 2018), 278 pages./

Every philosopher sends out his or her most precious insights in hopes that someone will discover this “message in a bottle,” and receive “a testimony to the transience of frustration and the duration of hope, to the indestructability of possibilities and the frailty of adversities that bar them from implementation.” In Another white Man’s Burden: Josiah Royce’s Quest for a Philosophy of white Racial Empire (AwMB), Dr. Tommy J. Curry unearths a startling agenda that sets the stage for Royce’s philosophy of loyalty. Polish readers will find parallels in the circumstances that led to Curry’s critique of Royce with the events surrounding Zygmunt Bauman’s recently recovered and published Sketches in the Theory of Culture. Thought to be entirely destroyed by the Polish government in 1968, thanks to the due diligence of a persistent colleague, the book’s time has arrived despite its fifty-year hiatus. Curry, too, like Bauman’s editor Dariusz Brzezinski, discovered a pivotal piece of the puzzle of Royce’s scholarship. After being reassured that no such address existed, in 2008 Curry did a Google search for Royce’s “Some Characteristic Tendencies of American Civilization” (1905) on the indebtedness of America to Britain in shaping the philosophy of loyalty. It is as if a crucial manuscript of Royce’s has appeared in a manner similar to rediscovering Bauman’s book fifty-years after it was believed to be destroyed.

How to cite:

Jackson, Myron Moses. “On the Lookout for the Dark Arts and Finding Our Better Selves in Another white Man’s Burden.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 3, no. 2(8) (2019): 140-147. https://doi.org/10.14394/eidos.jpc.2019.0024.


Myron Moses Jackson
Department of Philosophy, Xavier University
3800 Victory Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45207, USA

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