We're all irrational some of the time. Yet many past philosophers have put a great emphasis on human rationality as what sets us apart, and even made it a condition of moral action. In this episode of Philosophy Bites Lisa Bortolotti (@lisabortolotti) explores some different types of irrationality and the implications for human agency.
Harvard philosopher Christine Korsgaard defends a Kantian account of the status of animals in this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast. She argues that we should treat animals as ends in themselves and spells out what that means in practice.
Historically the philosophy of education has been at the core of the subject. Today there are relatively few philosophers working in this area. Meira Levinson, a philosopher with experience of teaching in US public schools, is one of them. Here she discusses fundamental questions about what we are trying to do when we educate our children.
This 38 minute bonus episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast is a compilation of responses to the question 'Who is the most impressive philosopher you've met?' It includes the late Ronald Dworkin's answer.
What is probability? Not an easy question to answer, that. We figured our best chance of clarity on the issue was to speak to the Cambridge philosopher and author of a book on the topic, Hugh Mellor...
Most parents want their own children to do well in life. What are the morally acceptable limits on the benefits we can confer on our own children? Adam Swift, who has recently published a book on this question co-written with Harry Brighouse, discusses this question with Nigel Warburton.
Subjective experience leads to the so-called 'hard problem' of consciousness: the difficulty of explaining qualia in terms of the brain. Keith Frankish discusses both the problem and a possible solution in this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast.
What makes us what we are? Perhaps the new field of genomics holds the key. John Dupré a philosopher of biology explains what genomics is and how we may need to revise traditional views of how evolution works.
Great literature such as Dostoevsky's novels, Shakespeare's plays, and Kafka's stories are often claimed to convey important truths about the human condition. Peter Lamarque is sceptical about this way of discussing literature. He explains why in this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast.
When we interact with each other we appreciate that other people know many things, and believe many things. But what's the difference and why does it matter? Jennifer Nagel discusses our intuitions about knowledge with Nigel Warburton in this episode of the Philosophy Bites podcast.
We are sometimes asked about the equipment we use to record Philosophy Bites podcasts. Here's the lowdown. We use a Marantz PMD620 hard disc recorder (about the size of a cigarette packet) with the excellent Sennheiser MD 46 microphone which cuts down on handling noise etc., monitoring the recording on headphones. We always edit our podcasts and then release them via Libsyn on iTunes, on our weblog Philosophy Bites and on our iPhone/iPad app and also our Android app.
The Philosophy Bites podcast is unfunded. We want to keep the series going. Please help us if you can by pledging at Patreon, or by using the Paypal buttons in the lefthand column of this weblog. We are very grateful for any contribution.
Nigel Warburton will be leading two 6-session evening courses on Thursday evenings from 4th September, 2014 in the Bertrand Russell Room at Conway Hall near Holborn, London. Details of the courses and booking can be found here: