Illuminating Philosophy

Stories Beyond Boundaries

By Samuel Gorovitz


In these 25 true stories, a widely published philosopher recounts 60 years of interaction with people in all walks of life – some extremely famous, others complete strangers – from hospitals to restaurants, concert halls to airplanes, in private conversations and nationally broadcast interviews.

Stories can be heartbreaking, distracting, funny, shocking, inspiring, revealing, and sometimes unforgettable – and all those attributes appear here. There’s no substitute for learning what it’s like to be someone else, to see the world as that other person does and reconsider our own views in light of that learning. These compelling and accessible stories motivate and enable us to do that, illuminating the unexpected relationships among all domains of human concern, the wellsprings of creativity, the elusive character of good judgment, and the pathways to social justice. They help us see more clearly what we care most about: deep features of human character and difficult choices, of social structures, of the power of imagination, of how to take account of the importance of what cannot be counted, and of bogus boundaries and assumptions that can repress clear thinking in any domain. These stories will make the reader more powerful in service of those values.