195 episodes

Very Bad Wizards is a podcast featuring a philosopher (Tamler Sommers) and a psychologist (David Pizarro), who share a love for ethics, pop culture, and cognitive science, and who have a marked inability to distinguish sacred from profane. Each podcast includes discussions of moral philosophy, recent work on moral psychology and neuroscience, and the overlap between the two.

Very Bad Wizards Tamler Sommers & David Pizarro

    • Philosophy
    • 5.0, 6 Ratings

Very Bad Wizards is a podcast featuring a philosopher (Tamler Sommers) and a psychologist (David Pizarro), who share a love for ethics, pop culture, and cognitive science, and who have a marked inability to distinguish sacred from profane. Each podcast includes discussions of moral philosophy, recent work on moral psychology and neuroscience, and the overlap between the two.

    Free Wanting (Frankfurt's "Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person")

    Free Wanting (Frankfurt's "Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person")

    David and Tamler want to go old school and discuss a classic Frankfurt paper on free will. But do they want to want that? Are they free to want what they want to want? Are they free to will what they want to will or to have the will they want?


    And if that’s not Dr. Seuss enough for you, shouting “FUCK” increases pain tolerance but what about shouting “TWIZPIPE”?
    Sponsored By:
    BetterHelp: You deserve to be happy. BetterHelp online counseling is there for you. Connect with your professional counselor in a safe and private online
    environment. Promo Code: VBWSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Repeating the “F” word can improve threshold for pain during an ice water challengeFrontiers | Swearing as a Response to Pain: Assessing Hypoalgesic Effects of Novel “Swear” Words | PsychologyVery Bad Wizards has a new shirt! [CottonBureau.com]Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person by Harry Frankfurt

    • 1 hr 28 min
    Postmodern Wet Dreams (Borges' "Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote")

    Postmodern Wet Dreams (Borges' "Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote")

    David and Tamler dive into “Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote,” a very funny Borges story that also raises deep questions about authorship, reading, and interpretation. What would it mean for the same text to be written by two different authors more than three hundred years apart? Is this story the post-modernist manifesto that literary critics like Roland Barthes believed it to be? Or is the narrator in the story just a delusional sycophant, a victim of Menard’s practical joke – and the story by extension, a practical joke by Borges on the post-modernist movement to come?


    Plus, My Little Pony fans finally confront their Nazi problem. 
    Sponsored By:
    BetterHelp: You deserve to be happy. BetterHelp online counseling is there for you. Connect with your professional counselor in a safe and private online
    environment. Promo Code: VBWSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    'My Little Pony' Fans Confront Their Nazi Problem - The AtlanticVery Bad Wizards has a new shirt! [CottonBureau.com]Pierre Menard, Author of the Quixote - WikipediaThe Brothers Karmazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky (Translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky) — This is the edition we will be reading from in our upcoming miniseries.

    • 1 hr 36 min
    All the Rage

    All the Rage

    A lotta anger out there right now, but does it do more harm than good? Is anger counterproductive, an obstacle to progress? And even when it is, can anger be appropriate anway? We talk about two excellent articles by the philosopher Amia Srinivasan criticizing anger's critics. Plus we express some counterproductive anger of our own at the IDWs response to the protests.  
    Sponsored By:
    The Great Courses Plus: Never stop learning. Pursue your passion. Quench your curiosity. Embark on an educational endeavor. Watch thousands of streaming videos on hundreds of subjects. Promo Code: wizardsSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Would Politics Be Better Off Without Anger? | The NationWelcomeSrinivasan, A. (2018) The Aptness of Anger, Journal of Political Philosophy. Reprinted in the Philosopher’s Annual.

    • 1 hr 36 min
    We Pod. We Pod-Cast. We Podcast. (Frankfurt’s “On Bullshit”)

    We Pod. We Pod-Cast. We Podcast. (Frankfurt’s “On Bullshit”)

    David and Tamler talk about police violence, the protests, and Harry Frankfurt's journal article turned bestseller ”On Bullshit." Plus we dive into a comic masterpiece of late capitalism: the University of Oregon's brand guidelines.
    Sponsored By:
    The Great Courses Plus: Never stop learning. Pursue your passion. Quench your curiosity. Embark on an educational endeavor. Watch thousands of streaming videos on hundreds of subjects. Promo Code: wizardsSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Brand and Style | University CommunicationsThe Black Goat – A podcast about doing scienceTwo Psychologists Four Beers Episode 46: Very Good Men (with Very Bad Wizards)Break Music: Seven Minutes by peezOn Bullshit - WikipediaFrankfurt, H. (2005) On Bullshit. Princeton University Press.

    • 2 hrs 1 min
    The Anality of Evil (Freud's "Civilization and its Discontents")

    The Anality of Evil (Freud's "Civilization and its Discontents")

    David and Tamler dive into Sigmund Freud’s world of unconscious drives, death instincts, and thwarted incestuous urges in his classic text “Civilization and its Discontents.” If society has made so much progress, why are human beings perpetually dissatisfied? Can religion help us or is it a big part of the problem? What’s really going on when you piss on a fire to put it out? Also: how seriously should we take Freud today given some of his wackier ideas? And is he a psychologist, a philosopher, or something else entirely?


    Plus we select the finalists from a huge list of suggested topics for the Patreon listener-selected episode!
    Sponsored By:
    BetterHelp: You deserve to be happy. BetterHelp online counseling is there for you. Connect with your professional counselor in a safe and private online
    environment. Promo Code: VBWSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    Anal retentiveness - WikipediaAnal expulsiveness - WikipediaPsychosexual development - WikipediaCivilization and Its Discontents - Wikipedia

    • 1 hr 37 min
    Conceptual Mummies (Nietzsche's "Twilight of the Idols")

    Conceptual Mummies (Nietzsche's "Twilight of the Idols")

    Socrates was ugly and tired of life, so he made a tyrant of reason. Philosophers are mummies who hate the body and the senses. Reason is a tricky old woman. Morality is a misunderstanding. Kant is a sneaky Christian. And don't even get Nietzsche started on "free will" or the "self" - just excuse for priests to punish people, a hangman's metaphysics. David and Tamler dive into Friedrich Nietzsche's Twilight of the Idols, a fascinating set of aphorisms brimming with passion, provocation, questions without answers.


    Plus, a professor is sanctioned for sex talk with his students - fair or coddling foul?
    Sponsored By:
    BetterHelp: You deserve to be happy. BetterHelp online counseling is there for you. Connect with your professional counselor in a safe and private online
    environment. Promo Code: VBWSupport Very Bad Wizards
    Links:
    George Mason University investigation faults professor for sexual talk with students in class and a hot tub, court records show - The Washington PostNietzsche, F. "Twilight of the Idols" [amazon.com affiliate link] — This is the version we read, but there's a cheaper kindle version on Amazon if you search (at least on the US website). Twilight of the Idols - Wikipedia

    • 1 hr 42 min

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6 Ratings

6 Ratings

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