Read another response about Profession
Consider the following scenario: I am very good at doing analytic philosophy (though I am not a genius by any means), specially analytic metaphysics, but not limited to that field. I am well acquainted with the literature on the subject, I have an excellent grasp of the arguments and am pretty good at suggesting objections or proposing new arguments (or variations of old ones). Also, I have a pretty good command of the relevant technical material, that is, classical logic, modal logic, mereology and set theory, etc. Suppose I am capable of original and rigorous work. Suppose I profoundly dislike being taught in a university but have a fine time debating with (competent) professors, visiting lecturers and students (outside of the lectures), who, if asked, will acknowledge my philosophical ability. However, since I am not fond of the academy (as a student), I do not have any degrees. Suppose I am still young so I haven't published anything but I have plenty of ideas which, with a little work, might make it into publishable papers. Suppose I don't mind lecturing at all, and devote all my spare time to research. My question is this. Is there no hope for me to become an academic philosopher? That is, is there any possibility that I can devote myself professionally to lecturing and researching within academic circles? Do journals even publish such outsiders? (In theory the editorial board should review anonymous submissions, so no such personal information should be relevant in the process, but I don't know how it goes in practice). I know that people like Raymond Smullyan were unconfortable with "business as usual" as well in the academy but were, in time, able to become accepted in the fold. It may seem inconsistent to dislike the bureacracy and regulations of university life (as a student), yet have some strong desires to be in the academy, however two things may be said with regards to the scenario. The first is that I have a profound passion for the subject as well as a strong wish to contribute research, the second is that a philosopher also needs to have some financial stablity. I want to briefly clarify that I am passionate about analytic philosophy but am trapped in a country were most professors are only interested in Heidegger, Deleuze, Derrida and the like (I hope this doesn't ruffle some feathers, I don't mean to offend anyone). I hope my question doesn't strike you as pretentious or wholly misguided. I think the culture of credentialism is profoundly pernicious, though that is a subject for another question. Thanks.