ABOUT THIS WEBSITE

About 2400 years ago Plato internalized the debating voices he heard around him in Athens and invented the philosophical dialogue. We grateful heirs to his dialectical way of thinking have turned those voices inside out. An increasingly plausible Socrates, Dr. Soderholm has been at the centre of this emerging web of intellectual activity as he attempts to play the ancient roles of midwife, gadfly, and torpedo fish.

Dialogic Imaginations is a work-in-progress guided by the spirit of Ralph Waldo Emerson: “All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better.”

New Dialogues
To Autumn
Henry Baxter & James Soderholm
Let us speak of death, poetry, and transfiguration. Today in Hyde Park I showed you an oak leaf in its death throes, flaming into beauty one last time. I gave you a botanical explanation about why leaves turn color in Autumn—sometimes I still prefer the American “Fall,” partly for its biblical and Miltonic associations...
Woolf, Wolves, and Us
Melkon Charchoglyan & James Soderholm
I love the dinner scene in To the Lighthouse. How everyone gropes to understand one another but never quite does; the resulting tension; the huge distance between the characters' perspicacious thoughts, feelings, and the disappointing or reticent way those thoughts and feelings play out in the real world...
Le mot juste
Grace Clover & James Soderholm
One aspect of Flaubert's description of Madame Bovary's husband, Charles, has stayed with me. Charles’s conversation was commonplace as a street pavement, and everyone’s ideas trooped through it in their everyday garb, without exciting emotion, laughter, or thought...
Uncivil Wars
Lyall Rosgill & James Soderholm
A spate of iconoclastic protests and demands for social reform this year has eventually culminated in a letter—a remarkably controversial letter, signed by over 150 academics, writers and activists...
Dream On
Bruno Lindan & James Soderholm
For several thousand moons I have been thinking about that epigram from Beyond Good and Evil. I wonder what abysses Nietzsche looked into. And did he become monstrous in the act...
Making Waves
Cal Hewitt & James Soderholm
I would like to argue that the fluke of the blue whale pictured above is—from the standpoint of evolutionary biology, if not cosmic harmony—both a necessity and, well, a fluke...
Time to be Human
Amelia Liddell & James Soderholm
Sometimes thinking in geological or even better cosmic time sorts me out. If the Earth were a 24-hour clock, Homo sapiens have been around for about two seconds...
The Art of Danse Macabre
Cal Hewitt & James Soderholm
As the entire world seems swept away by one dreadful thing, the little black death of our time, I would like to engage you on the subject of Art...
'Tis new to thee
Leandra Bernstein & James Soderholm
As I become more and more like Prospero—craggy, crabby, losing my magic—I sometimes reflect on the meaning of The Tempest and the several sea-changes it has undergone in my evolving, dying brain...
Who's Afraid of Jacob Rees‐Mogg?
Charles Noble & James Soderholm
With twelve days until Jacob Rees-Mogg visits our school to give a talk, my nerves are not good...
The Worship Business
Zoë Abrams & James Soderholm
Freud argues that religious feelings and sentiments--and especially the need for an all- protective father--are the reasons why people seem to believe in supernatural beings and engage in religious practices...
The Victim
Alice Abrams & James Soderholm
We live in an age of victimhood. Political turmoil, an aging population and skyrocketing rates of mental illness seem to subject almost everyone to some kind of unjust misfortune...
The Importance of Being Wicked
Ophelia Gregory & James Soderholm
It is not clear if Dorian Gray is a hero or a villain. Neither is it clear if Wilde would have disdained that moralistic question...
On Time
Joshua Gawley & James Soderholm
In some fragment, the Greek philosopher Heraclitus says that time is a child playing a game-- time is the child's kingdom. I've always wondered what he meant...