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Philosophy for our times: cutting edge debates and talks from the world's leading thinkers

being
Thinking and Being
Socrates famously claimed 'the unexamined life is not worth living'. Yet from surfing to sex, playing an instrument to riding a bike, our most joyous moments are not when we are lost in thought but when we are lost in experience. Do we reflect too much and should we explore being more, or is this a hippie illusion?
imagine
Strange New Worlds
Imagining Reality

From writing to art, the intense to the light hearted, imagination transports us to untold fantasy worlds. Yet Picasso claimed "everything you can imagine is real".  Should we dismiss this as the overblown claims of a celebrity artist, or might what we take to be reality actually be the product of imagination?
Eds exciting INFORMATION
The Universe Code
Is information fundamental?

We think information provides facts about the world around us. Yet some now claim that information is primary, more fundamental than matter. Could information provide the ultimate constituents of the world?  Or is this a delusion borne from the specific and passing vocabulary of a digital age?
money talks
Rethinking Capital
Are there alternatives?

As China and Russia adopt their own variants, the reign of capitalism seems absolute. Yet there are many who wish for an alternative and some who claim a final crisis is in the making. Is there a radical alternative that we have not yet discovered? Or is the reality that capitalism is the only viable economic system?
vaprs 2 geometry
After the End of Truth
Beyond Post-Modernism

A generation raised on Foucault and Derrida has learned to distrust claims to objective truth. Yet the mantra that 'there is no truth' is a paradox. Do we need a new conception of fantasy and reality to free us from the tyranny of truthmakers and the paradoxes of postmodernists alike?
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Terrorism and the Truth
Is the threat real?

From 9/11 to 7/7, terrorist atrocities leave tragedy in their wake. Yet since 2001, 53 people have been killed in the UK by terror attacks.  27,000 have been killed on the roads.  Is terrorism more fantasy than reality? Should we ignore dramatic headlines, end mass surveillance and feel safe?  Or is the threat real and substantial?
William Morris design for Trellis wallpaper 1862
Politics and Passion
William Morris design for Trellis wallpaper 1862
Categories: Ideas & Ideology
Speakers: Jonathan Cruddas
The Labour Party is in its greatest crisis. Reduced to piecemeal politics and retail offers, it has lost its purpose. In the midst of a fraught leadership contest, Labour's chief philosopher Jon Cruddas asks: how can Labour rediscover its sense of virtue and the good life? "A maverick... extraordinarily candid" Guardian  
The Science and the Soul of Dreaming 940x394
Cycles of Wonder
Can Science revive spirituality? The Science Delusion author Rupert Sheldrake explores a new paradigm. "An excellent scientist… the kind that in an earlier age discovered continents" New Scientist
queen of hearts2
Desire, Dreams and Happiness
Can we ever arrive?

Many think wealth, love and fame bring happiness. But Proust warned that while desire makes life blossom, possession makes it wither. Is there more value in desire and aspiration than in arrival? And if so should we seek better dreams and fantasies to enrich our lives?
lies and necessity
Of Lies and Necessity
Is honesty a fantasy?

We demand honesty as a core value from politicians and lovers alike. Yet small and not-so-small lies have a habit of creeping into our lives. Is it possible to be completely honest - and would it be desirable? Is lying a necessity for life or should we insist on honesty as a means for social cohesion and trusting relationships?
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