Philosophy for our times: cutting edge debates and talks from the world's leading thinkers
The Best is to Come
What is the future of art?
"Everything has been written. Everything has been done." So feared Pascal. Yet from perspective to the evolution of cinema, artists have outdone their masters. In art and philosophy is the best yet to come, or as Eliot said "is there only the fight to recover what has been lost and found and lost again?"
Running the World Differently
What if women were in power?
A world where men and women shared power equally is thought desirable. Yet from Angela Merkel and Mrs Thatcher, to Marissa Mayer and Sheryl Sandberg, leading women often appear to behave similarly to men. Is it a fantasy to believe that having women in power will make the world less violent and problematic? Or would it be fundamentally different?
Is the age of reason dead?
Many assume Enlightenment values will triumph over violence and prejudice. But in the wake of ISIS and Charlie Hebdo, victory seems less inevitable and the age of reason less secure. Might history not be on our side after all? Do we need more passion to combat zealotry's allure or will reason alone win in the end?
The Fall of the Alpha Leader
Modern life is too fast and complex for powerful individuals to save the day. For CEO and author of Wilful Blindness Margaret Heffernan, poster child leaders are fantasy jobs. "A polemic against the dangers of groupthink" FT
The Self and the Selfless
Does true altruism exist?
From personal acts of kindness to charitable gifts to strangers, altruism is seen as a high point of moral virtue. Yet studies suggest altruism is driven by self-interest and personal satisfaction. Does true altruism exist? Is altruism an evolved behavior shared with animals, or can it be pure and transcendental? In association with The Big Issue.
Changing the World
Is activism a failed strategy?
From Tahrir Square to Hong Kong, Occupy Wall Street to Anonymous, we have seen a surge in grassroots and social media activism. Yet the army is in power in Cairo and bankers continue to draw their bonuses. Is activism a failed strategy? Are political parties the only way to drive change or will student and street activism surprise us yet?
The Limits of Human Consciousness and Thought
Are our minds confined to our bodies? Eminent philosopher Ted Honderich uncovers the true reach of human consciousness. "A courageous swim against the current" - The Times