Vlogbrothers and 'Nerdfighter' online personalities Hank and John Green set about conquering the world of educational media a few years ago---while also writing bestselling novels, recording popular albums, and creating startups and charitable organizations on the side.
This week we are talking to Angie Hobbs, the UK’s first Professor of the Public Understanding of Philosophy.
The world seems divided into the relevant and the irrelevant. Doctors are relevant, given how much we treasure our health. Lawyers are relevant too, given how much we value our property. Even economists are relevant, given our strangely unquenchable desire to witness the past being predicted with deadly accuracy. But philosophers? Not so much, it seems.
Angie believes, however, that philosophy anchors our human experience: “ it’s where we find the principles on which we build our knowledge, the tools to critical thinking and the keys to a more fulfilled life ”, she explains in this week's ReThink clip,
When students decide to major in philosophy, they are often greeted with shock, bewilderment and parental dismay. And always a few jokes. Such as: “How do you get a group of philosophers off your doorstep? You order pizza and then throw it outside your yard.”
That’s an understatement. It might be surprising to think of a career as a philosopher as a potentially high impact ethical career - the sort of career that enables one to do a huge amount of good in the world. But I don’t think that philosophy’s impracticality is in the nature of the subject-matter. In fact, I think that research within certain areas of philosophy is among some of the most important and practical research that one can do. This shouldn’t be surprising when one considers that philosophy is the only subject that addresses directly the fundamental practical question: what ought I to do?
How do you define “basic services”? What’s the difference between them and “essential services”? What is meant by terms like “natural capital”, “raw material” or “essential medicines”? How do these all fit into an ontology?
How did everything begin? What makes us human? What is the self? How do I live a good life? What is love? We’ve all asked these questions, if only within our heads, and recently a series of BBC animations written by philosopher Nigel Warburton and narrated by a variety of celebrities have done their level best to answer them–or at least to point us in the direction of answering them for ourselves by not just telling but wittily showing us what great minds have thought and said on the issues before we came along.
As long as there has been such a subject as philosophy, there have been people who hated and despised it. I do not want to exaggerate, in a self-pitying or self-dramatising way, the present extent or intensity of this dislike; I am not thinking of the philosopher as emblematically . . .
The Open Commons of Phenomenology are a community-led academic endeavour to host in open access the full corpus of public domain or otherwise openly licensed phenomenological source texts, to provide an exhaustive, harvestable bibliographical database of phenomenological literature (primary and secondary), and to provide digital curation tools such as advanced search, bibliometric analysis, annotations, social sharing, etc.
We asked a range of Philosophy Bites interviewees the simple question 'What is Philosophy?'...Here are some of their answers: Listen to What is Philosophy? The Philosophy Bites podcast is made in association with the Institute of Philosophy.
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