J. Carl Mickelsen
College of Letters, Arts & Social Sciences
Campus Locations: Moscow
Lecturer in Philosophy
With UI Since 1990
J.D. - University of Idaho, 1992
M.A. – Philosophy Washington State University, 1977
B.A. – Philosophy Portland State University, 1973
“Least of all should an intellectual be there to make his/her audience feel good:
The whole point is to be embarrassing, contrary, even unpleasant.”
- Edward Said, Representations of the Intellectual
As a youth, Carl intensely disliked school. When he turned 17, he quit high school and joined the Navy. His timing in this was not the best since the Gulf of Tonkin incident – the pretext for the escalation of the never-declared “war” in Vietnam – occurred while he was in basic training. Nonetheless, he survived and after 4 years of service was honorably discharged. For the next decade, he intermittently attended college and eventually earned a MA in philosophy. This duly qualified him to work as a carpenter, which he did for the next several years. He then started his own small construction firm.
When his body rebelled and he could no longer perform heavy labor, he folded the business and went to law school. While in law school, he began teaching in the philosophy department at the UI. Upon graduating from law school, he was hired as an attorney by a non-profit disabilities rights organization. Carl is still employed in both this job and as an instructor at UI.