Dialogues on Disability: Shelley Tremain Interviews T. Virgil Murthy

Hello, I’m Shelley Tremain and I’d like to welcome you to the ninety-eighth installment of Dialogues on Disability, the series of interviews that I am conducting with disabled philosophers and post to BIOPOLITICAL PHILOSOPHY on the third Wednesday of each month. The series is designed to provide a public venue for discussion with disabled philosophers about a range of topics, including their philosophical work on disability; the place of philosophy of disability vis-à-vis the discipline and profession; their experiences of institutional discrimination and exclusion, as well as personal and structural gaslighting in philosophy in particular and in academia more generally; resistance to ableism, racism, sexism, and other apparatuses of power; accessibility; and anti-oppressive pedagogy.

The land on which on which I sit to conduct these interviews is the traditional ancestral territory of the Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabeg nations. The territory was the subject of the Dish with One Spoon Wampum Belt Covenant, an agreement between the Iroquois Confederacy and the Ojibwe and allied nations around the Great Lakes. As a settler, I offer these interviews with respect for and in solidarity with Indigenous peoples of so-called Canada and other settler states who, for thousands of years, have held sacred the land, water, air, and sky, as well as their inhabitants, and who, for centuries, have struggled to protect them from the ravages and degradation of colonization and expropriation.

My guest today is T. Virgil Murthy. Virgil is a fourth-year graduate student at Carnegie Mellon University in Pennsylvania, U.S.A. She works in philosophy of disability, especially addiction, and the history and philosophy of statistics. She is co-founder and editor of the Addict Collective blog and enjoys playing ragtime piano and shadowboxing.

[Description of photo below: Virgil, a biracial brown person with wavy black hair, who is wearing a black shirt and floral skirt, stands in the corner of a porch enclosed by a metal fence. She is smiling. The shadow of a nearby tree, out of frame, is visible across her face, right arm, and chest.]

Welcome to Dialogues on Disability, Virgil! Please describe your background and social position, as well as the route you took to graduate studies in philosophy.

Thanks for having me, Shelley! I greatly appreciate the Dialogues on Disability project and I am humbled to be featured this month.

I was raised in Cleveland, Ohio, in the United States. Cleveland is an epicenter of Black subordination and was an inflection point of the American civil rights movement. John Terry, the namesake of American stop-and-frisk policy—or “Terry stops”—was profiled by police officer Martin McFadden close to where I grew up. The Hough neighborhood, where the riots of 1966 happened, is just a few minutes away from me. Cleveland is one of the most segregated cities in the United States: about 50 percent Black and 40 percent white, with disproportionate wealth and almost all suburban homes white-owned. The city is both a paradigm example of white flight and a vibrant center of activist organizing. I am proud of my city’s metonymic relationship to ongoing struggle for liberation.

My upbringing was, in general, privileged—I unquestioningly assumed that my standpoint was universal and did not notice much of the oppression around me. I come from an upper middle-class family, loving and tight knit. From youth, I cultivated an uncritically meritocratic view of education and work, partly due to my affluent background. I expected that I would go to college, become accredited in some suitable field, and join a professional community.

I am biracial: South Asian and white. I did not realize that my parents were an interracial couple until I got to the age where you start to notice others noticing you. My experience of being biracial is akin to my experience of bisexuality: I am often considered an amalgamation of disparate, warring halves, one of which is “atypical” and the other “typical.” Yet, as with bisexuality, the pathologization of mixed-race people is about the perception of one singular atypicality: a product of an inherently abnormal crossover. Thus, Ronald Sundstrom’s writing and Gloria Anzaldúa’s politics of mestizaje have been inspiring to me.

I understand multiraciality as embodying multiple identities in ways that are often considered contradictory and perverse. I think that there is an unspoken worry within both liberal and reactionary thought that cultural pluralism will erase the inherent good of diversity: a hundred years hence, everyone will look like me, and that is tragic. This worry comes across as a combination of fetishism and fear. Individual mixed-race people are envied for our access to multiple sets of signifiers and told that we are sexually desirable in light of our racial status. Simultaneously, however, mixed-race people, as a group, are viewed as a fundamentally anti-aesthetic monolith. This feeling, namely, that one is treated with a sort of existential dread about the “end of history”—as a metonym for some apparent contradiction between identity pride and multiculturalism—is an essential element of the mixed-race experience, inseparable from the strong metaphysical nature that people assume race has.

Now I am going to abruptly transition to talk about my alcoholism. I am signposting my alcoholism in this way to explicitly counteract any supposition that I drank because of the trauma of biraciality or the ennui of suburbia. We addicts are expected to frame our stories as confessionals, highlighting the natural progression of cause, consequence, and conquering. A related epistemic injustice, which I call “involuntary narrativization,” applies to all disabled people.

For example, abled listeners often shoehorn narratives of “overcoming” into disabled testimony. These narratives reaffirm that disability is a pathological feature. Similarly, the view that alcoholics “drink to fill the hole inside” is inseparable from the idea that we are already miserable people even if we aren’t drinking and, therefore, interventions geared towards improving our conditions would make a bigger difference elsewhere. I refuse to be involuntarily narrativized! I am an alcoholic exactly because I am a person marginalized by the structures that oppress alcohol addicts.

I first had the opportunity to drink unsupervised when I went to college, immediately winding up in the hospital. It quickly became apparent that I could not “drink responsibly.” I proceeded to get sober for a few weeks at a time, over and over, as my undergrad progressed. For the first year and a half, I had no idea what was happening to me. I knew that I viewed alcohol differently from other people, but I did not have the language to describe this difference to them. There is no addiction history in my family; and the cultural representations of alcoholism are unrealistic, to put it lightly. My declining grades and declining health were mitigated through the assistance of incredible friends and mentors, most of whom I remain close with today.

I decided to double major in math and “humane letters”—a design-your-own major which I used to study Christian and Buddhist theologies and to read a lot of Dante and Borges. Because of the circumstances of being an alcoholic, I did not learn as much as I would have liked. I am left feeling that those studies were not very productive. What I did gain was a love for math and theology—two of the least pragmatic fields imaginable! This focus did not mesh well with the unreflective view that I had about education as a path to credentialism.

I started conceptualizing myself as a vocational scholar. Drawing from the romanticized cultural view of addiction, I fancied myself ill-suited to the real world: interesting, insightful, but tragic and unable to take care of myself. (As an aside, a similar phenomenon exists with respect to Madness; Sofia Jeppsson talked about this phenomenon in her interview in December of last year.) The ivory tower, I thought, was where “people like me” belonged. It wasn’t until later that I was able to diagnose this phenomenon for what it was: the “addict mystique,” which I describe on the Addict Collective blog.

I eventually realized that my attitude toward mathematics was a philosophical one. I liked considering what makes proofs beautiful and how the political lives of mathematicians had informed their theories. I searched for philosophy programs that might accept someone with a non-philosophy degree and found the interdisciplinary, lovably eccentric CMU department. I’m now a fourth-year Ph.D. student there.

What ultimately replaced my vocational narrative was a political understanding of education. Nowadays, I feel very much like a philosopher. For me, philosophy is neither a “path of least resistance” nor some tortured creative destiny. Rather, I have a happy and (I hope!) healthy relationship to philosophy. I feel that philosophy and I have something to teach each other. Politics is the axis along which these contributions lie.

Tell us about your current dissertation research. Does it extend and expand your previous research initiatives?

I matriculated at CMU to study philosophy of statistics. The question of what makes some string of values “random” has always fascinated me. My dissertation project suggests a new characterization. I argue that while some existent formulations of randomness use statistics as a tool, it is altogether different to define randomness outright in terms of statistics. I claim that the feature in virtue of which sequences are random is that they are not “surprising” or “informative” to an experimenter using certain statistical methods.

That may sound specialized and abstract—and for me, it started that way. Nowadays, I think that philosophy of math and social philosophy are inextricably connected. For example, I study the historiography of statistics: the way that philosophers and practitioners of statistics have construed the history of the discipline. Some philosophical interpretations of probability are believed to have been dismissed for reasons which, I think, seem odd in retrospect. There is a pretty well-established historical narrative about why the probability theory known as “hypothetical frequentism” fell out of favor—for those readers and listeners interested, among the reasons are the reference class problem, interderivability results, and Ville’s theorem. Some of these reasons overgeneralize to problematize competitor theories too, while others do not seem relevant to the plausibility of frequentism at all. In addition, there are legitimate problems with frequentism that received comparatively little discussion, adding to the strangeness of the historical debate.

This study has made me believe that the motivation for discarding frequentism was partly sociological and political. The advocates of the frequentist view were radicals, targeted by the Nazis. Besides, other interpretations of probability are more conducive to certain political ends. For example, I plan to write something about how subjective Bayesianism serves to legitimize speculative trading by establishing it as a natural extension of other forms of probabilistic inquiry. Another case is this: Karl Popper’s well-known critique of the “unfalsifiability” of Marxism is grounded in his theory of experiment, on which the single-case propensity probability plays a central role.

None of this work in any way addresses the ineliminable intersection between gambling and probability theory, which, as an addict activist, I intend to discuss in my future work. I once thought philosophy of math was altogether removed from politics. But no! The project of systematic philosophy rages on.

You have mentioned The Addict Collective blog, which is the blog on intersectional addict activism that you created and produce with another addict writer. Please tell our readers and listeners more about The Addict Collective blog.

I met Anna Lind on Twitter and was immediately struck by her commitment to approaching addict liberation through radical politics. We became fast friends—we were both concerned with addict oppression, which is not really a concept that gets much discussion. We decided to start a politically-oriented blog by and for addicts. Our project, the Addict Collective, is an endeavor to popularize addict activism and liberation, by which I mean an endeavor to characterize addict oppression, critique narratives of addiction and policy concerning addiction, and generally celebrate addict experience and identity. This project is, as far as we know, the first of its kind. We hope to platform the work of addicts and allies, from published journal papers to anonymous online musings.

Our mainstay is the maxim “Nothing about us without us.” Nonaddicts generally dominate both research and policy about addiction, which is epistemologically counterproductive. Addicts are the best-positioned knowers in this discussion! Our marginalization within the discipline facilitates an environment of defamiliarization. In one of my posts at the blog, I connect this defamiliarization to what I call the “Normal Person Plus” abled view of disability, which alternates between downplaying and showcasing various elements of the lives of disabled people on the grounds of what parses as a “spectacle.” In relation to addicts, Normal Person Plus arises when nonaddicts interpret addiction as an isolated, intermittent pattern of behavior and, therefore, imagine, extrapolating from their own experience, that we must be just as confused about what is happening to us as they are. But while some addicts report that their desires and interests in active use were confusing to them, others do not, and still others find that this relationship changes over time. Such varied and pluralistic elements of addict experience are difficult to explain to nonaddicts because of the dominance of the already-accepted views. Therefore, one of our major goals is to help create a hermeneutics of addict interiority. I hope that this project will help overcome some of the contributory injustice that occurs when addicts provide testimony.

What makes addict activism particularly exciting is that it is fundamentally intersectional. Addicts are oppressed in virtue of being addicts. But the apparatus of addiction systematically further marginalizes already-marginalized groups. In both the social construction of the addict category and the political creation of drug distribution and criminalization architecture, the relationship of addict oppression to myriad other axes of oppression is irreducible. Often, people are addicts because they are marginalized. I want to explain what I mean, for I worry that drawing correlations between marginalized groups tends to get co-opted and backfire.

Sometimes addiction is described as a response to generational trauma. I am sympathetic to the motivation behind that claim, but I worry that it sanctions the interpretation of addiction as created by individuals’ bad luck, or by wrongdoing firmly situated in the past. It undercuts the deliberate, present-day role of power structures in addict oppression. To attribute the crack epidemic to the poverty and racialization of inner-city communities is to sidestep the way in which crack addiction was strategically used to justify broken windows policing. Anna’s meditation on the fentanyl panic provides excellent insight into how these kinds of moral narratives around drug addiction function, reminding us that we are in the midst of one. To describe opioid overdoses in Appalachian communities as “deaths of despair” is to ignore how Purdue Pharma intentionally targeted these communities based on the belief that they comprise gullible and miserable people.

So, when I say that people are addicts because they are marginalized, what I mean is this: transnational political structures have made it such that many already-marginalized people have atypical relationships to some substance or process. It’s a reductionist claim; I tend to be very deflationary about why marginalized identities overlap. On this topic, I’ve written about shibboleths of marginalization on the blog in relation to anti-trans rhetoric.

In your blog and Twitter activity, Virgil, you have been critical of the ways in which the term stigma is employed to discuss the social barriers that addicts confront, advocating instead that addiction, as you have now indicated, be characterized through oppression. Please provide our readers and listeners with a more detailed sketch of what you describe as “addict oppression.”

A lot of well-meaning people talk about ending the “stigma” or “shame” of addiction. They reject the terms addict and alcoholic in favor of the term substance-use disorder, a term which I dislike because it presupposes natural, value-laden characteristics. They advocate transforming the dynamics of addict treatment: doctors, judges, etc. should be more sympathetic to addicts. The conditions of addicts, according to this narrative, are products of the negative views of us that nonaddicts hold.

The problem with characterizing harm to addicts through “stigma” is that doing so identifies social attitudes as the cause. In fact, such attitudes are merely a symptom of the marginalization of addicts. I argue that the concept of oppression provides a better framework for evaluating the political status of addicts. I define addict amelioratively: to be an addict is to be vulnerable to what I call the “bear-trap model of punishment.” When an addict is entrapped, people automatically assume that the entrapment is justified by appeal to the addict’s own best interest or the best interests of others. As I put it in my blogpost: “By falling victim to the trap, you’ve proven that you need to be trapped.”

In my work, I describe a few subtypes of addict oppression. First there’s the “carceral-clinical seesaw,” a peculiar form of subjugation in which legal and medical bodies negotiate with one another for the right to confine you. Criminal prosecutors often allow inpatient treatment as an alternative to imprisonment. Many involuntary civil commitment statutes in the United States permit addicts to be sent to rehabilitation programs in prisons. I am currently writing something on the relationship between Canadian addicts, MAiD, and the ongoing civil commitment dispute in British Columbia. At every step, the carceral and sanatorial superstructures, which may appear to be in competition against each other, are actually cooperating with each other.

A second subtype of addict oppression, one which also involves eugenics, concerns eugenics and childrearing. I call it “intergenerational erasure”: addicts are prevented from creating communities that self-perpetuate across time. For example, addicts are coercively sterilized, e.g., through the non-profit Project Prevention. Judges have given more lenient sentences to addicts who agreed to tubal ligations than they would have received if they had refused. Then there’s family separation: removal of the children of addicts from their communities. This separation functions as a hermeneutical oppression. When the children of marginalized communities are systematically abducted, the communities are prevented from creating activist programs and liberatory projects that become refined across generations.

Another oppression type is the “resource gap”: addicts are denied opportunities granted to otherwise similar nonaddicts. Addicts receive lower priority in organ transplantation and are classified as “drug seeking.” Homeless addicts are systematically excluded from many relief efforts geared toward homeless people; for example, shelters employ random search and drug test policies, as one of my forthcoming pieces will discuss.

Perhaps the most obvious oppression is economic exploitation. If alcoholics collectively curbed our intake, even a little, transnational liquor empires would collapse. The same is true for gambling addicts and sports betting. That relationship does not exist by mere coincidence: gambling addicts are precisely the demographic that the industry “has in mind.” I’m working on a forthcoming piece about this exploitation, addressing the sort of Paretian counterargument that in any industry a small demographic will account for most of the revenue. 

I claim that these oppressions—the carceral-clinical seesaw, intergenerational erasure, and so on—are upstream of stigma. Nonaddicts witness the subjection of addicts to oppression and conclude that we, in virtue of our behavior, require outside oversight. Sometimes the justification is the apparent blameworthiness of addicts. More often, it is claimed that we are dangerous: we need to be kept in check to maintain order. Even if it’s not our fault, we cannot take care of ourselves. Left to our own devices, we wind up injured, dead, or impoverished. We harm our children. Nonaddicts need to supervise us to prevent these things.

The material consequences of demonizing us are no different from the material consequences of merely infantilizing us. Already, people who support separating the children of addicts from their communities believe themselves to be compassionate. The way they view it, they are making a tough, but necessary, choice. When an addict in active use becomes pregnant, a rights conflict emerges between parent and child. We might be sympathetic to a parent’s unfortunate circumstances, but our foremost obligation is to their child. We can think addicts are not bad people and simultaneously believe that their children must be separated—saved, really—from them.

Of course, the apparent justification for this belief is the perception that the addict is an “unfit” parent. In other words, the stigma cannot really be eliminated; it simply takes on a different meaning. Rather than immoral, addicts become helplessly dangerous. I worry that the anti-stigma advocates are really saying, “We should continue enacting addict oppression but must also wring our hands at the injustice of it all.” To attack stigma while remaining uncritical of the oppression of the people stigmatized—that is, the people who are subjected to it—is to repaint the walls of the prison.

What forms of ableism have you confronted in philosophy and academia with respect to addict oppression and the other ways in which you are disabled?

I define “alcohol culture” as the view that alcohol delineates between work and leisure spaces: that alcohol transforms dreary contexts into fun ones. Alcohol is everywhere in the philosophy world—conferences, invited talks, social get-togethers. I almost exclusively occupy dry spaces. By “dry,” I mean alcohol-free, drug-free, and gambling-free. The presence of alcohol in any setting is distracting and fraught for me. Especially so, in philosophy contexts! In settings where alcohol is present, I am asked to socialize and engage in discussion while simultaneously confronting this substance that I have a different perception of than do nonaddicts. In short, I do not get to go to a lot of events that philosophers plan for philosophers. These events take place predominantly in bars, or in restaurants where everyone’s drinking, or (bafflingly) on campuses but with alcohol present.

One of the difficult things about starting an addict activist program is that “puritanical” teetotalers seem to have a monopoly on wanting dry spaces. I have addressed this matter in some of my writing. Some addicts want such spaces too; but our motivations for doing so are different than what drives these other people. Unlike them, we do not think that consuming substances is immoral. It is an accessibility consideration—we are materially worse off when our drugs of choice are around. At best, it is distracting. At worst, we end up using and then performing socially atypical behaviors for which we will ultimately be blamed. This, then, is one of the ways in which addict oppression follows the bear-trap model that I have mentioned. You get scooped up by the net and subsequently people ask how you could be so irresponsible rather than ask why the net was there in the first place.

Resistance to alcohol culture—even just setting up dry events—is met with defensive hostility, interpreted as self-important criticism of nonaddicts’ substance use. This conflation between addict liberation and temperance is tricky to navigate. On the one hand, the adage “You don’t need to drink to have fun!” is a rallying cry for a Frances Willard-type that I would not count among my allies. On the other hand, the adage is true and useful for understanding alcohol as a discursive object that facilitates biopower by instantiating a work-life demarcation.

Here is the most irritating reply that I get when I suggest that a given philosophy event be made dry: “Just call your sponsor if you’re having a hard time.” Such commentary, in addition to assuming that all addicts must be in twelve-step recovery, reifies the individualization of addiction as a personal failing. Philosophers increasingly support inclusivity in the form of eliminating barriers to spaces. As you have written recently, however, some barriers are regarded more critically than others. In many cases, that is, if there is some barrier to a nonaddict’s entry into a given space, philosophers think that the barrier should be removed; yet, if the barrier instead applies to an addict, we continue to exhort her to do better, to fix whatever is wrong with her: “You have a problem—why should the rest of us suffer for it?”

It is difficult to build a coalition around accessibility because there are strong incentives not to disclose addiction status. Whenever I go to a workshop to talk about addiction, invariably someone privately informs me that they are an addict. I was very touched by Kristin Rodier’s remark, “My resistance is hugging fat philosophers and offering my contact info”—which is so true to my experience. I hug a lot of addict philosophers! Often, there is little else that I can do. Addiction produces a double-bind around passing because much addict oppression functions in virtue of category membership rather than actual substance use. I will not out people. I am categorically against participating in any process that might get another addict institutionalized.

I am ADHD, as I discuss on the blog. I agree wholeheartedly with Johnathan Flowers’s discussions of being ADHD in academic philosophy. My papers parse as disorganized—their contents are loosely connected, cartographically rather than argumentatively. Revising my papers to normative standards is extremely time-consuming. My writing is also long. It has become a joke among my friends: “You asked Virgil for essay comments, she’ll send a 10-page review.” People take my lengthy writing as symptomatic of a sort of selfishness, as if I am pontificating. But it isn’t that. My neurodivergence manifests in my style. The ideas come as they come; so, I start a bunch of mini-essays and then link them together. In the process, length accrues. And then, I cannot separate the mini-essays into discrete projects because they are interrelated in complicated ways; they would not stand on their own. People tell me to write a book. Blogging is liberating: I can write for as long as I want!

I have also faced ableism in regard to my energy atypicality. I am ME/CFS and have a restless-leg variant called chronic akathisia. I get very little work done. Most of my work happens in bursts. Then I consider, in contemplative bafflement, how the people around me are so productive. How does everyone go everywhere all the time? Weekend conferences? I generally need weekends and intra-workweek off days—which I make sure exist for this purpose—to regain energy. When my akathisia is bad, I cannot be in the office; I need to be at home. Everyone seems to run on much less sleep than I do. When I get fewer than 10 hours sleep at night, I am exhausted. The undergirding assumption that being abled is the default manifests in the way that our institutions are organized.

The unifying feature of my experiences of ableism related to alcoholism, ADHD, fatigue, and akathisia is that structural inaccessibility perpetuates itself through, and gains legitimacy from, the well-meaning comment that I just need to form “good habits.” I describe this feature as “oppression-by-attrition”: various situations produce the illusion that your subjugation could be easily rectified through simple fixes within your control. Like bear-trap oppression, oppression-by-attrition is self-reinforcing: it causes and ostensibly justifies oppression. I am regarded as capable of completing—but never actually complete—the “life hacks” that abled people think would transform my circumstances. Calling a sponsor, learning to study right, imposing deadlines on myself.

I am told: “If you maintained a normative sleep cycle, you wouldn’t be so tired.” But that antecedent is deliberately decontextualized. I always end up subverting my sleep schedule, against my own will; the preexistent commitments that I could not finish earlier because of my fatigue require it! Being disabled in philosophy feels like shoveling snow down a narrow hallway: sooner or later, you will run into the wall of snow that you built in front of you because there was nowhere else to put it. Disabled people are forced to make strategic decisions to offset the immediate wage of ableism. We play zero-sum games between now and later. In turn, we feel as if it is our fault: “I should have budgeted my time differently.” But what else were we meant to do if not shovel the snow forward? These constant tradeoffs between present and future are a survival mechanism in an ableist world.

Virgil, how would you like to end this interview? Would you like to say anything more about something that we have discussed? Is there anything that you would like to talk about that we have not touched upon? Do you want to recommend any articles or other materials related to something that you’ve mentioned in this interview?

I would like to point out an important venue of intersectional addict activism, especially to BIOPOLITICAL PHILOSOPHY readers and listeners who are located in the United States. The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) is challenged in the pending Supreme Court case Haaland v. Brackeen and will likely be ruled unconstitutional. If so, tribal sovereignty will be significantly restricted, such that non-Indigenous parents can adopt an Indigenous child against the wishes of the tribe.

This practice constitutes a form of the intergenerational erasure that I described earlier. Often in these circumstances, the baby tests positive at birth or the parents are addicts. That is the situation in the Brackeen case. If ICWA is overturned, these children will be ripped away from their communities and the ability to actively participate in transgenerational liberation goals. I stand in solidarity with the Indigenous activists who point out that the campaign to eliminate ICWA was never about children’s interests, but rather is about breaking up Indigenous communities to frustrate their political potential, especially in relation to land disputes with the American government.

Overturning ICWA will facilitate the further oppression of Indigenous addicts. In this regard especially, I recommend Rebecca Nagle’s podcast This Land—the second season of which is about the challenge to ICWA. Jonathan Nez, former president of the Navajo Nation, gave an interview on the topic, which I also recommend. I implore readers and listeners of Dialogues on Disability and BIOPOLITICAL PHILOSOPHY more generally to offer any solidarity, allyship, and assistance that local and national Indigenous activist organizations need.

Virgil, I am very happy that you have issued this call to action and very grateful for this fascinating interview in its entirety. I have gained a great deal from the interview and I’m especially pleased to know that various Dialogues on Disability interviews have provided you with resources for your work. This interview will make an important contribution to the Dialogues on Disability series archives.

Readers/listeners are invited to use the Comments section below to respond to T. Virgil Murthy’s remarks, ask questions, and so on. Comments will be moderated. As always, although signed comments are preferred, anonymous comments may be permitted.

The entire Dialogues on Disability series is archived on BIOPOLITICAL PHILOSOPHY here.

From April 2015 to May 2021, I coordinated, edited, and produced the Dialogues on Disability series without any institutional or other financial support. A Patreon account now supports the series, enabling me to continue to create it. You can add your support for these vital interviews with disabled philosophers at the Dialogues on Disability Patreon account page here.


Please join me here again on Wednesday, June 21, 2023, for the ninety-ninth installment of the Dialogues on Disability series and, indeed, on every third Wednesday of the months ahead. I have a fabulous line-up of interviews planned. If you would like to nominate someone to be interviewed (self-nominations are welcomed), please feel free to write me at s.tremain@yahoo.ca. I prioritize diversity with respect to disability, class, race, gender, institutional status, nationality, culture, age, and sexuality in my selection of interviewees and my scheduling of interviews.

1 Response

  1. […] “To be an addict is to be vulnerable to what I call the ‘bear-trap model of punishment’” — T. Virgil Murthy (CMU) interviewed about addiction and being an alcoholic philosopher when “alcohol is everywhere in the philosophy world” […]


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