Born in the high desert of Nevada, I am currently professor of philosophy in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Paris. In 2019-20, I was the John and Constance Birkelund Fellow at the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers of the New York Public Library.
My next more or less scholarly book, The Internet Is Not What You Think It Is, will appear in 2021 from Princeton University Press.
I am a writer. I write literary non-fiction, poetry, and fiction, and I also translate poetry. I am currently translating the Olonkho, a Siberian oral epic, for University of California Press. I am co-author, with D. Graham Burnett and Catherine Hansen, of a work of historiographical metafiction, appearing in 2021 from MIT/Strange Attractor Press.
For 15 years, from 2005 to 2020, I regularly posted long-form essays at my website, www.jehsmith.com. I also frequently wrote for various print and online media, but like many people who are moving to the newsletter format I grew tired of being forced by editors, and by the economic and political forces that constrain editors in turn, to use words that were not my own. Substack solves that problem. I sincerely hope you will join me here, and I am very grateful for your readership.