In episode 15 of Sacred and Profane Love, titled, “Faustian Ambitions,” I speak with my colleague and neighbor, Professor Anne Pollok, about Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s famous tragedy, Faust. For the purposes of our conversation, we use the Norton Critical Edition, translated by Walter Arndt and edited by Cyrus Hamlin, which is available here. Goethe’s drama deals with the infinite striving that lies at the heart of the human condition, and how our quest for the transcendent can go terribly awry.
Anne Pollok is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Carolina. She did her Dr. Phil at the Martin Luther University in Halle-Wittenberg, and was a Postdoctoral Teaching Fellow at Stanford University prior to her appointment at UofSC. Her main areas of research are in early modern, aesthetics, and 20th century philosophy of culture.
Jennifer A. Frey is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at the University of South Carolina. Prior to joining the philosophy faculty at USC, she was a Collegiate Assistant Professor of Humanities at the University of Chicago, where she was a member of the Society of Fellows in the Liberal Arts and an affiliated faculty in the philosophy department. She earned her Ph.D. in philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh, and her B.A. in Philosophy and Medieval Studies (with Classics minor) at Indiana University-Bloomington. Her research lies at the intersection of philosophy of action, ethics, and law, with a particular focus on the Aristotelian-Thomist tradition. She has published widely on action, virtue, practical reason, and meta-ethics, and has recently co-edited an interdisciplinary volume, Self-Transcendence and Virtue: Perspectives from Philosophy, Theology, and Psychology.