There have been more than a few college papers written about Phish, whether in music class, sociology, or you found some really clutch angle in Gamehendge to discuss the crisis in some corner of the world. We have all been there, a couple times in some cases. (ahem) But when you have an entire college course that connects Phish to Philosophy, then you have something much deeper and far more interesting than most college papers could ever hope to become.
Enter Stephanie Jenkins, a philosophy professor at Oregon State University and a longtime Phish phan. This summer, Stephanie plans to combine her two passions in an online college course nicknamed the “Philosophy School of Phish”, and a documentary film in the works.
“I have to find what students are passionate about in order to speak to them about philosophy,” Jenkins said. “Phish, or any pop culture topic, elicits interest and engages them. It’s really about teaching effectively in ways that students will remember and use for the rest of their lives.”
Stephanie’s goal this summer is to make this experience of teaching the online class accessible to everyone by filming a documentary about the class, discuss why Phish matters, and what happens when Foucault meets Fluffhead. The classroom” in this case will be on the road with Phish. Here, Prof. Jenkins will explore the meaning of Phish’s music, and why over the past 30 years, they’ve spawned a devoted community of fans who see them over and over (and over) again. Students will talk with fans and some of the most influential voices from the Phish community, as well as various lectures on tour, on the web, and at conferences across the country.
Stephanie has started a Kickstarter campaign to help fund her Philosophy School of Phish documentary, and is looking for support from fans to make this come true. A truly educational product, with deep roots in philosophy and the sociology of the Phish community, this film has great potential to showcase the embedded intelligence and knowledge networks of the Phish community. This film will break the mold, showing how Phish is a celebration of adventure, a gathering place for ritual and wonder, and a home for the child in us all.
Show Stephanie some support in her campaign and let’s make this movie!