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The Man in the High Castle is an Amazon TV show, based on the Philip K. Dick novel, about an "alternate present" (beginning in the 1960s) in which Germany and Japan won World War II, with the former Western US occupied by Japan, the former Eastern U.S. occupied by Nazi Germany, and a small "neutral zone" between them. A theme of the story is that in this alternative world there is eager speculation, fueled by the illicit newsreel, The Grasshopper Lies Heavy , about how the world would have been different if America had won the war.
In The Man in the High Castle and Philosophy , twenty-two professional thinkers look at philosophical issues raised by this ongoing enterprise in "alternative history." One question is whether it really made a profound difference that the Allies won the war, and exactly what differences in everyday life we may expect to arise from an apparent historical turning point. Could it be that some dramatic historical events have only superficial consequences, while some unnoticed occurrences lead to catastrophic results?
Another topic is the quest for truth in a world of government misinformation, and how dissenting organizations can make headway.
About the Author
Bruce Krajewski is Professor and Chair of the Department of English, University of Texas at Arlington. He is the author of Traveling with Hermes: Hermeneutics and Rhetoric (1992) and translator and editor of Gadamer on Celan (1996).
Joshua Heter holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Saint Louis University. He currently teaches at Iowa Western Community College.
Table of Contents
I Now Wait for Last Season 1
1 Juliana in Plato's Cave Dennis M. Weiss 3
2 Say Heil! to Architecture Fernando Gabriel Pagnoni Berns Emiliano Aguilar 15
3 Saving Hitler's Life Donald McCarthy 25
II The World Dick Made 35
4 Cruel Optimism and the Good Nazi Life Lukasz Muniowski 37
5 In the Neutral Zone, a Libertarian's Home Is Their (High) Castle M. Blake Wilson 47
6 The Self-Willed and Ignorant Law Marc W. Cole 59
7 What if Your Hero Is a Fascist? Bruce Krajewski 71
III Captives of Unchance 81
8 Is It Free Will If You Pay for It? John V. Karavitis 83
9 Could the Axis Have Won the War? Miguel Paley 93
10 Defying Fate Benjamin Evans 105
IV Flow My Tears, the Ethicist Said 117
11 Is Resistance to Fascism Terrorism? Corey Horn 119
12 Are We Really Sure They're Wrong? Timothy Hsiao 127
13 But Why Is Our World Better? Tim Jones 137
14 Reel Lucky Elizabeth Rard 149
V A Maze of What-ifs 161
15 Farts, Butterflies, and Inner Truth Franklin Perkins 163
16 How Close Is That World to Our World? Brett Coppenger 175
17 When Worlds Diverge Ananya Chattoraj 185
VI A Video Darkly 197
18 How to Deal with Reality when We're not Built To T.J. Zawadzki Stephanie J. Zawadzki Maciej A. Cisowski 199
19 What if Evil Had Won? Verena Ehrnberger 209
20 The Spirit of Abstraction Christopher Ketcham 221
21 After Death It Can Get Worse Sam Director 233
Agents of Philosophical Propaganda 249