100 episodes

In a world marked by wicked social problems, The Minefield helps you negotiate the ethical dilemmas, contradictory claims and unacknowledged complicities of modern life.

The Minefield  ABC Podcasts

    • Philosophy

In a world marked by wicked social problems, The Minefield helps you negotiate the ethical dilemmas, contradictory claims and unacknowledged complicities of modern life.

    Ordinary vices: What’s wrong with lying?

    Ordinary vices: What’s wrong with lying?

    This week on The Minefield, we explore what Montaigne referred to as "that accursed vice" — the most corrupt and all-corrupting of them all: lying.

    • 43 min
    Why does democracy demand transparency?

    Why does democracy demand transparency?

    Does representative democracy depend on practices of public scrutiny, or exercises of 'popular sovereignty' between elections?

    • 48 min
    In the aftermath of the Iowa caucus …

    In the aftermath of the Iowa caucus …

    Every four years, a disproportionate amount of attention is focused on the unlikely midwestern state of Iowa. In a very real way, the Iowa caucuses encapsulate the profound political and ethical challenges that confront the Democratic Party in its bid to defeat Donald Trump in November — challenges that continue to bedevil democratic politics in other countries: How to mobilise voters around a common cause, without tipping over into either absolutism or unprincipled, 'whatever-it-takes' pragmatism?

    • 50 min
    After the fires, are we invited to moral community with trees?

    After the fires, are we invited to moral community with trees?

    Over the summer months, Australia has witnessed the devastation of forests and the immolation of wildlife on an unimaginable scale. The emotional or even the tragic content of the bushfires has been — understandably — reserved for the loss of human life and home and livelihood, and for the loss of some non-human animals. But why do we grieve fauna and not flora? What if these fires present to us an invitation we refuse to heed: an invitation to rediscover moral companionship, moral community with trees?

    • 43 min
    2020 — why does the future look so much like the past?

    2020 — why does the future look so much like the past?

    Back in 2008, newly elected prime minister Kevin Rudd convened a summit of Australia’s "best and brightest" to discuss what kind of nation they wanted Australia to be in 2020. Now that we’re here, 2020 doesn’t look very much like the future at all. What happened? Is there a lesson here about the importance of adopting a sceptical posture, a profound reticence to claim to know, much less predict, our political future? Or are we just reading the wrong signs?

    • 47 min
    Can we overcome terminal disagreement in our politics and morality?

    Can we overcome terminal disagreement in our politics and morality?

    If the recent glut of "democracy in crisis" books is anything to go by, there is a sense that something has gone wrong in our common life. Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt has diagnosed the increasing 'tribalism' in and of our civic and political life particularly acutely, and he joins Waleed and Scott to discuss whether and how we might break free from its Manichean absolutism.

    • 44 min

Top Podcasts In Philosophy

Listeners Also Subscribed To

More by ABC Podcasts