Based on every philosopher I have ever met:
The kind of philosopher that is an atheist. For this person, philosophy is about showing people how rational they are. This philosopher isn’t like regular people who sit around believing in magical faeries like cause and effect, ‘existing’, or (ugh) an all powerful deity. They talk a lot in class, but mostly to go on long-winded rants about logical technicalities and then look around the room and are surprised to see everyone’s tweeting about how obnoxious they are. This person has never read Nietzsche, but claims to, and favors Bertrand Russell, Ayn Rand, and John Searle. They grow up to get graduate degrees in some kind of analytic philosophy and become the kind of joyless professors that don’t let you have class outside and use a bell curve.
The kind of philosopher that smells really bad. This person is a philosopher because they probably couldn’t make it anywhere else. They double majored in political science but they’re too nice and unambitious to make it in that field. They decided to become a philosopher because in high school they read Albert Schweitzer’s essay on Reverence for Life. They grow up to join the Peace Corps or some other thing that allows them to be dirty and bleeding heart liberals for life.
The kind of philosopher that is a Christian. This person doesn’t see any reason why faith and reason can’t co-exist and they want you to know it! They’ll waste valuable time reading Tertullian and working the teleological suspension of the ethical into every.single.paper. They have a point-by-point response to Bertrand Russell’s Why I am Not a Christian on their blog (faithluvsreazon.tumblr.com). ***puke warning*** If asked who their favorite philosopher is, this person will respond “Jesus Christ.” They grow up to be pastors or priests or if they’re women, marriage and family therapists.
The kind that is a woman. There are at least two subsets of this category which seem to be butch girls that try to fit into one of these other categories or girlbros. I have no idea how girlbros get to be philosophers. Literally none. But it happens, and it makes me happy. The kind of philosophers who are women like to read David Hume (bc he’s sexie + keut), Judith Butler (bc she talks about women), and Richard Rorty. They grow up to run non-profits or get law degrees.
The kind that speaks exclusively in eleven syllable words. They’ve read everything, though don’t try to strike up a conversation about any of the soft philosophers, they prefer Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, or someone obscure like Jacques Ellul. Ask instead whether they consider Babluani to be directly influenced by Schrodinger’s cat thought experiment in creating the french film 13 Tzameti. They aren’t social due more to their busy reading schedule and lack of social skills than any lack of desire to be around people. Usually, underneath this impenetrable cloak of genius, are some really cool people who also happen to fall into the next category…
The kind that does too many drugs. Everybody knows this person. He (it’s almost always a dude) is probably pretty brilliant, with great ideas relating to metaphysics, philosophy of religion, and other more ethereal subdisciplines. He also reeeeeally loves weed. Weed all day, weed all night. The higher he gets, the better his ideas seem to him, so he gets even higher, and so on. This type of philosopher is a pretty huge waste, because the more they smoke they less they retain the ability to communicate ideas. You know the type: “It’s just like…. the universe…. you know? Like how could it not, man?”
The kind of philosopher that has never had a girlfriend. They stutter and sweat when they talk to girls and have double majors in biology or something. They listen to The Knife and read Heidegger for fun. They discovered philosophy because in high school they loved Catcher in the Rye so they read Franny and Zooey which references The Way of a Pilgrim which references the Philokalia and then they tried reading actual philosophy as a way to think about mysticism. They read toothpastefordinner.com religiously. They grow up to be psychiatrists and stay at home dads.
The kind of philosopher that is sexy and brooding. Doesn’t exist. ;(