25 episodes

Leading philosophers bring to the surface the ideas hidden behind the biggest news stories.

The Philosopher & The News Alexis Papazoglou

    • Society & Culture
    • 5.0 • 14 Ratings

Leading philosophers bring to the surface the ideas hidden behind the biggest news stories.

    Quassim Cassam & Extremism

    Quassim Cassam & Extremism

    This month marks the 20th anniversary of 9/11, the day two planes, hijacked by members of Al Qaeda, flew into the world trade centre in New York City, killing thousands. A third plane hijacked plane crashed into the Pentagon that day, the headquarters of the US military, while a fourth crashed in Pennsylvania, after its passengers managed to divert it from its original target.  A 20-year war in Afghanistan was supposed to have eradicated Al Qaeda and Islamic terrorism, but last month, as the United States army was evacuating its personnel and allies from Kabul airport, ISIS K, a different Islamist terrorist  organisation, attacked the airport with suicide bombers, killing at least 60 civilians and 13 US troops.  
    Is it the willingness to use violence what defines an extremist? Or is it perhaps their extreme ideas, occupying the far ends of the ideological spectrums of politics and religion? Can the status quo ever be considered extremist? And what do people mean when they say that extremes meet - that extremists of all political orientations and religions have something deep in common?

    Quassim Cassam is professor of philosophy at the University of Warwick, and author of the just published book Extremism: A Philosophical Analysis.

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    This podcast is created in partnership with The Philosopher, the UK’s longest running public philosophy journal. Check out the autumn season of online philosophy webinars: https://www.thephilosopher1923.org

    Artwork by Nick Halliday

    Music by Rowan Mcilvride

    • 56 min
    Darrel Moellendorf & Ending War Justly

    Darrel Moellendorf & Ending War Justly

    On August 15, following the swift withdrawal of US military forces in Afghanistan, the city of Kabul was taken over by the Taliban. 20 years since the start of the American offensive against the Taliban, as a response to the 9/11 attacks by Al Qaeda, Joe Biden did what his two predecessors had promised, but failed to follow through: he ended America’s military involvement in Afghanistan. 
    But the immediate collapse of the Afghan government and military that the US had spent years supporting, and the ominous return of the Taliban in power puts into question whether Biden’s decision was the right one. 
    Is putting an end to war always the just thing to do? Should the costs and sacrifices suffered during a war determine whether the war should continue or end? Or should a war only end when its original aims have been achieved?

    Darrel Moellendorf holds the Chair for International Political Theory and Philosophy at Goethe University in Frankfurt am Mein, and is one of the few philosophers to engage not only with the question of what makes a war morally justifiable, but more importantly, under what conditions is ending a war the morally right thing to do.   

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    This podcast is created in partnership with The Philosopher, the UK’s longest running public philosophy journal: https://www.thephilosopher1923.org

    Artwork by Nick Halliday

    Music by Rowan Mcilvride

    • 45 min
    Stephen Mumford & Watching the Olympics

    Stephen Mumford & Watching the Olympics

    The 2020 Tokyo Olympic games are finally going ahead. But increasing concerns over the games turning into super-spreader event,  means that the athletes will be competing and performing without a live audience. The stadiums will be empty. 
    But even without live spectators, the Olympic games will be watched by millions of people around the world. So what is it that gives many of us such a pleasure to watch athletes perform at the peak of their game? Is the pointlessness of sport, the absence of any life or death consequences, part of the reason we enjoy it? Is the ferociously competitive nature of sport, with winners and losers sometimes separated by only milliseconds apart, a good model for life itself?  And most importantly of all questions, why is parkour not a sport? 

    Stephen Mumford is a professor of philosophy at the University of Durham, and although a metaphysics, he is also one of the most prolific philosophers of sport, and author of three books on the subject, Watching Sport: Aesthetics, Ethics and Emotion, Football: the philosophy behind the game, and more recently: A philosopher looks at sport.

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    This podcast is created in partnership with The Philosopher, the UK’s longest running public philosophy journal: https://www.thephilosopher1923.org

    Artwork by Nick Halliday

    Music by Rowan Mcilvride

    • 52 min
    Personal Responsibility in a Pandemic & The Political Philosophy Podcast

    Personal Responsibility in a Pandemic & The Political Philosophy Podcast

    On July 19th, all legal restrictions related to the Covid-19 pandemic are coming to an end in England. That includes things like social distancing, keeping 2-meters apart from strangers, and the wearing of facemasks on public transport and at airports. Instead, the prime minister said the government would be relying on the personal responsibility of individuals to take any necessary precautions. 
    But is this move by the UK government guided by science or ideology? In a pandemic, when our health doesn’t depend only how responsible we are, but on how others behave around us, is personal responsibility an appropriate principle to appeal to? Is the function of the language of personal responsibility to merely shift the blame from government failure onto the public? And is the left’s tendency to resist acknowledgement of the role of personal responsibility in people’s life outcomes in danger of undermining our sense of autonomy and control over our lives? 
     Toby Buckle is the creator and host of The Political Philosophy Podcast

    This podcast is created in partnership with The Philosopher, the UK’s longest running public philosophy journal: https://www.thephilosopher1923.org

    Artwork by Nick Halliday

    Music by Rowan Mcilvride

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Joe Mazor & Media Impartiality

    Joe Mazor & Media Impartiality

    On June 13 a new TV channel launched in the UK called GB News, dubbed by many as the UK’s answer to America’s Fox News. 

    In an increasingly polarised political environment, is increasingly biased media all we can expect? Is this simply an honest acceptance of the fact that all journalists are biased, that, like all of us, they occupy non-neutral perspectives onto the world of politics? Or is this giving up too quickly on the value of impartiality, when it comes to news coverage? Is there in fact a way for journalists to give us “just the facts”, free of value-judgements and prejudices?  And do worries of journalistic bias conceal some of the bigger problems with our media landscape, and make us draw false equivalences between news organisations that embody very different journalistic standards? 
    Joe Mazor is a Senior Lecturer in Politics, Philosophy and Economics at Duke Kunshan University and a visitor at the LSE’s Centre for philosophy of the natural and social sciences. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2009 and was then a postdoctoral fellow at Princeton’s Center for Human Values and at Stanford’s Center for Ethics in Society.

    He is the author of a two part blog post for the LSE called Media Impartiality: What When and Why and Media Impartiality: How on which this conversation is based. Mazor has a very interesting and original proposal for how to achieve media impartiality, inspired by the adversarial trial model, so make sure you listen to the second part of our conversation when we come to discuss it. 

    This podcast is created in partnership with The Philosopher, the UK’s longest running public philosophy journal: https://www.thephilosopher1923.org


    Artwork by Nick Halliday

    Music by Rowan Mcilvride
     

    • 1 hr 1 min
    Tommy Curry & The Real Critical Race Theory

    Tommy Curry & The Real Critical Race Theory

    Why is the political right so riled up about Critical Race Theory? And what does the theory itself actually claim? Has Critical Race Theory simply become an umbrella term for all discourse to do with race and racism? And if so, are the accounts of racism as a systemic issue a watered-down account of Critical Race Theory’s more radical critique and diagnosis of the sources of racism?
     
    Tommy Curry is professor of philosophy at the University of Edinburgh.  His book 2018  The Man-Not: Race, Class, Genre, and the Dilemmas of Black Manhood  won the American Book Award. Curry pulls no punches in his account of how Critical Race Theory has been gentrified by institutional philosophy, and has purposefully forgotten its more radical roots in the work of people like Derrick Bell, who proclaimed that “racism is permanent” and that “black people will never gain full equality in this country." 

    • 1 hr 9 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
14 Ratings

14 Ratings

Kwadwo Duane Deterville ,

Lecture Professor Africana Studies

The interview with Dr. Tommy J Curry on Critical Race Theory was riveting! Curry's historically substantiated truthfulness and refreshing frankness left me wanting even more after an hour of discussion. Please have him back on your show.

KWizzle1988 ,

Great show

Great show please have Dr Tommy J Curry on more often i think the world needs to hear his voice the guy is brilliant

what-is-called-thinking? ,

Insightful and actionable

Alexis and guests offer insights into current political problems- and actionable solutions. All news should be through this intelligent filter!

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