Charles Taylor Ruined My Perfectly Good Consulting Career

How Reading the Philosopher's Sources of the Self Put My Own Sense of Self Through the Wringer

I first met Charles Taylor when I was a graduate student at McGill University in Montreal in 1984.

His classes were like nothing I had encountered as an undergraduate at Oxford University, where old yellowing lecture notes found themselves on the lectern year after year, and questions were rare—if not seen as aberrant behavior. Taylor would stride in dressed in jeans and immediately ask the class, “Where are we?” Consulting one of the more diligent note takers, he would say, “Oh yes, yes,” and be off once more, developing his arguments …