August 11, 2004
Director of Media Relations

AMHERST, Mass.—Amherst College faculty members Lawrence Douglas, associate professor of law, jurisprudence and social thought, and Alexander George, professor of philosophy, are the authors of Sense and Nonsensibility: Lampoons of Learning and Literature ($9.95, Fireside/ Simon & Schuster, New York, 2004), a collection of satires and parodies that poke fun at classic and contemporary literature, the educational establishment and American culture.

Douglas and George, turning their wit on themselves in a closing “Interview with Ourselves” in Sense and Nonsensibility, “have been called ‘The Odd Couple’ of creative humor writing, partners in a literary enterprise that has put them at the top of the fledgling field of ‘Smart Humor.’ Taken individually, each makes for an unlikely choice of partner: Douglas is by training a lawyer and has written extensively on the Holocaust, while George’s academic home is in philosophy, where he writes on language and mathematics.”

Douglas’s most recent book was The Memory of Judgment: Making Law and History in the Trials of the Holocaust (2001). A member of the faculty at Amherst since 1990, Douglas received an A.B. degree from Brown University, an M.A. from Columbia and a J.D. from Yale Law School. His essays and commentary have appeared in numerous publications, including The Washington Post, The Boston Globe Magazine and The New Republic.

George, a member of the faculty at Amherst since 1988, received a B.A. degree from Columbia University and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard University. He is editor of Reflections on Chomsky (1989), Western State Terrorism (1991) and Mathematics and Mind (1994). His most recent book, written with Daniel Velleman, professor of mathematics at Amherst, was Philosophies of Mathematics (2002).

Douglas and George have published work together in The New Yorker, The New York Times Book Review, McSweeney’s and the Boston Globe, among other publications, and they contribute a regular column to The Chronicle of Higher Education. Sense and Nonsensibility has a Website at