In a capitalistic society every human experience is susceptible of becoming a business, eg. the business of beauty, sex, art, justice, health, education, journalism, emotions and psychology, transcendence and religion and the notion of "truth", even prisons and war are a business in some countries.

Philosophy is no exception to this. I wonder if they are studies and books who talk about this specific market share target:

The consumer of philosophy. What kind of person spends money on philosophy these days? What's their psychological profile? Perhaps somebody not very social but intelligent? Perhaps kids who were bullied at school because they were too bright or they just didn't fit with the others because they were just not good at sports? Is it a need to sound brighter than the rest or perhaps it's about these existential crisis every now and then most people have that make them look for meaning in life? How about somebody who needs someone else who is more intelligent than they are who would tell them what they want to hear or would do most of their thinking for themselves?

If this is the case then these professional philosophers have an image, a reputation, an ego to maintain? They would go to debates trying to look intelligent and determined to "win them" by kicking some "smart ass" using arguments not because they think they are true but because they would make them win more followers and ultimately more money. Perhaps they would consider the Socratic method economically inefficient for good profits because who needs truth when you can have money? After all who needs truth when you can have the old "razzle dazzle".

Are there any authors who actually realize this and empathize more on truth than in the philosophers themselves?

"Though lovers be lost love shall not; And death shall have no dominion." Dylan Thomas

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  • 1
    This sounds like the standard Marx-Engels' critique of philosophy as ideology of the ruling classes mixed with Marx's also critique of commodity fetishism. The most recent, postmodernist, version of this mix is Baudrillard's, anticipated by Adorno-Horkheimer's "culture industry", see cultural commodity fetishism, but none of it is specific to philosophy. Most of academic philosophy is too esoteric to make it as a commodity, but it does produce its "cultural icons".
    – Conifold
    May 22, 2018 at 8:41
  • @Conifold that could be a valid answer to me
    – user22051
    May 22, 2018 at 9:02
  • Can anybody explain the downvotes and censorship of this question?
    – user22051
    May 22, 2018 at 13:05
  • I did not down vote but I voted to close because I think the question is off-topic for this site. May 23, 2018 at 12:47
  • 2
    This is a Q&A site more than a philosophy forum. The question also seems too broad and primarily opinion based. If someone provides a good answer, I would remove my close vote based on that answer. As a suggestion look at Paul Feyerabend's "Against Method" and try to formulate a question similar to the one you have here, but more specific to that text. Or pick some other philosopher to base a question on that could be answered in a few paragraphs. May 23, 2018 at 13:34

1 Answer 1



Marx-Engels "Critique of Philosophy as ideology"

Adorno-Horkheimer's "Culture Industry"

Interesting articles:



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