Dalton makes an impression at FSC: Professor recognized by Omicron Delta Kappa

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Hayley Metzler

Staff Writer

 

Many students may be familiar with Dr. Drew Dalton, the only full time philosophy professor here at Florida Southern College and the speaker at Omicron Delta Kappa’s last lecture series.

Dalton received his MA and Ph.D. from the Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium. He then taught at a small liberal arts college in New England called Saint Anslem College for three years before coming to FSC, where he has been teaching for the past four years.

Dalton teaches both entry and high level courses in philosophy, and he loves them all equally.

“I love them all for different reasons,” Dalton said. “There’s no favorite.”

Not only is Dalton a teacher, but he was also the speaker at the last lecture series by Omicron Delta Kappa, a national leadership honor society for college students, faculty, staff and alumni, as well as a published author.

His first book on philosophy came out in 2009. The book is titled, “Longing for the Other: Levinas and Metaphysical Desire.”

“It’s an exploration of the thoughts of the 20th century French philosopher Emmanuel Levinas, specifically his understanding of desire and how desire can manifest as both an ethical experience and a social and political one,” Dalton said.

However, after Dalton finished writing this book, he realized that he had some problems with Levinas and his thoughts of desire, so he is currently writing a new book in response to this.

“My new book explores the problems of Levinas’s understanding of ethics and tries to offer some possible ways of dealing with those problems,” Dalton said.

The overall message of Dalton’s new book is to “cultivate active ethical resistance.”

“I feel that ethics has more to do with learning how to say no to certain things rather than learning how to say yes,” Dalton said.

This theory is actually the opposite of what Levinas’s ethical viewpoint was, which was to say yes to all challenges.

Dalton is close to finishing his latest book and expects it to come out in the near future, but probably not this year due to the slowness of academic publishing. He also still has a few ideas he would like to “sit on” before sending it off to be published.

On April 4, he will actually be speaking about his book at a conference in Toronto. The speech will serve as a general outline of the book.

“I’m giving a two-hour long lecture which will outline the basic argument,” Dalton said. “I love doing things like that because it gives me the opportunity to get feedback from an audience.”

There is much more to Dalton, however, than just being a philosopher.

When Dalton is not teaching, lecturing or writing, he does many things in his spare time.

“I have a lot of hobbies,” Dalton said.

Some of these hobbies include middle distance running, jazz guitar, reading and watching movies. He also collects things such as old typewriters and watches and repairs them.

“My house is filled with collections of things,” Dalton said.

Overall, Dalton has a deep passion for philosophy. Teaching philosophy has shaped Dalton’s life in many ways.

When asked how teaching philosophy has changed his life, Dalton responded by saying that, “the easier question to answer would be how has teaching philosophy not shaped my life?” DaltonOnline