Public Philosophy Network

Encouraging and Supporting Publicly Engaged Philosophical Research and Practices

Podcasts and Radio

BBC Radio 4’s “In Our Time”
This series of radio broadcasts are hosted by Melvyn Bragg and various guest professors who are brought in for each show to discuss particular aspects of the history of ideas. The broadcasts’ topics focus on themes, like freedom, anarchism, and the soul, and they highlight key concepts from various philosophers. A unique feature of these shows is that, in addition to standard Western canonical figures, from Aristotle to Wittgenstein, they also talk about less frequently recognized thinkers. Western women, Islamic, and Chinese philosophers and philosophies are also given representation in the archives. Each show runs about 45 minutes and more recent broadcasts often have related links and references for further reading.

Uncommon Knowledge
Uncommon Knowledge is an American radio show broadcasting discussions of current affairs and public policy. It is presented by Peter Robinson of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. The web site contains an archive of transcripts and audio recordings of past shows, some of which concern philosophical issues, scientific ethics, and other subjects that may be of interest to students in the humanities. Episodes include: 'Disharmony of the spheres: science and religion'; 'In whose Image? Evolution and spirituality'; 'Hippocrates call your office: biomedical ethics'; 'Darwin's ghost: sociobiology and human behaviour'; and 'Attack of the clones: the ethics of human cloning'.

Chicago Public Radio
This is the homepage of Chicago Public Radio, an NPR broadcaster which features a broad range of programs on world affairs and discussion on environmental, social, cultural, religious, moral, philosophical, political and historical questions. Different programs are indexed alphabetically according to their titles, and users can find a wealth of information on individual shows on each program's specific subsite. The site includes audio clips of programs relevant to those working in the Humanities and especially in specific fields such as Philosophy. These latter clips include: 'The moral animal'; 'Philosophy's conception of evil'; 'Utilitarianism'; 'Language and Thought'; 'Boundaries of Science'; 'Rhetoric and Science'; 'Science and the Unknowable'; 'The Immutable Laws of Science'; 'Happiness, Death and the Remainder of Life'; 'The Intersection of Philosophy and Politics'; 'Theories of Justice'; 'The Aesthetics of Beauty'; 'Pragmatism'; 'Philosophy in Public Life'; 'Human Machine Distinction'; and 'Philosophy of Humour'. Users can listen to programs online or purchase a CD version of the recording. They can also check the online posting schedule for upcoming programs and listen to programs that are currently on air via the site.

Philosophy Talk
Philosophy Talk is a weekly, one-hour radio series that is hosted by professional philosophers, Ken Taylor (Stanford) and John Perry (UC-Riverside). With the input of invited guests from various other universities, Taylor and Perry bring philosophical approaches and insights to everyday topics, such as truth and beauty, terrorism and intelligent design, and love and happiness. Designed to be a rich, thoughtful, fun, and engaging discussion, these episodes are not lectures, but self-described as “philosophy in action!” All previous episodes are clearly titled and archived on the website for easy-listening, and upcoming topics are posted to encourage input from others who want to call in and join the conversation. Philosophy Talk also has a blog that gives a description of what happens on each week’s topic.

Public Ethics Radio
Public Ethics Radio is a well-developed program that engages ethicists on pressing issues, including political corruption, international trade, militarism, clean technologies, and intellectual property. Hosted by Christian Barry and produced by Matt Peterson, the dialogue of each episode addresses practical questions regarding pertinent issues while the descriptions online provide important background information, resources, and links to related previous episodes. There is also a blog roll that provides links to numerous other philosophy blogs. Public Ethics Radio is a production of the Center for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics at the Australian National University, the University of Melbourne, and Charles Sturt University.

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