Philosophy: The Classics
By Nigel Warburton
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Author Nigel Warburton reads from his book Philosophy: The Classics which is an introduction to 27 key works in the history of Philosophy
||CleanSoren Kierkegaard - Either/Or||Soren Kierkegaard's Either/Or is an oblique but brilliant contribution to philosophy. In this episode of Philosophy: The Classics author Nigel Warburton summarises the book and considers several interpretations of it.||21 7 08||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanJohn Stuart Mill - Utilitarianism||Is it better to be a happy pig or a sad Socrates? John Stuart Mill's Utilitarianism is the topic of this episode of Philosophy: The Classics.||17 4 08||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanJohn Stuart Mill On Liberty||Published in 1859, the same year as Darwin's Origin of Species, John Stuart Mill's On Liberty remains the classic statement of individual freedom. Here I summarise some of its main themes and outline some criticisms that have been made of it.||4 4 08||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanSchopenhauer - The World as Will and Idea||What is the nature of reality? Why can music be so profound? Are we doomed to suffer or is extended happiness possible? Should we choose a life of asceticism? These are some of the questions that Arthur Schopenhauer addressed in The World as Will and...||3 11 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanKant - Groundwork of Metaphysic of Morals||Immanuel Kant's ethical stance is uncompromising: you must do your moral duty whatever the consequences. In this reading from his book Philosophy: The Classics, Nigel Warburton outlines the main features of Kant's approach and sketches some criticisms...||1 10 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanKant - Critique of Pure Reason||What is our relation to reality? Are some features of our experience conditions of our having any experience at all? In this reading from his book Philosophy: The Classics Nigel Warburton attempts to summarise Immanuel Kant's Critique of Pure Reason,...||10 9 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanRousseau - Social Contract||How should society be organised? Can you force someone to be free? Jean-Jacques Rousseau's controversial The Social Contract is the subject of this podcast chapter of Nigel Warburton's book Philosophy: The Classics.||20 8 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanHume - Dialogues||Does the apparent design in the natural world point to the existence of an omnipotent, omniscient and benevolent God? In his posthumous Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, perhaps his finest work, David Hume put some devastating criticisms of the...||11 8 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanHume - Enquiry||How do we learn about the world? David Hume's answer, like Locke's, was via experience. In this podcast, based on Nigel Warburton's Philosophy: The Classics, outlines Hume's views on a number of issues such as induction, causation, and miracles.||22 7 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanLocke - 2nd Treatise||What are the legitimate powers of the State? This is the fundamental question John Locke addressed in his Second Treatise of Civil Government. Nigel Warburton sketches the main features of this work and outlines some criticisms of it in this podcast...||16 7 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanLocke - Essay||Is a newborn's mind a blank slate? What makes you the same person that you were several years ago despite bodily changes? These are two central questions that John Locke addressed in his classic work An Essay Concerning Human Understanding. Nigel...||19 6 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanSpinoza - Ethics||What kind of freedom can human beings achieve? Is the mind distinct from the body? Are we and everything in the universe part of God? In this episode of Philosophy: The Classics, Nigel Warburton outlines the key features of Spinoza's great book Ethics.||10 6 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanHobbes - Leviathan||Why would anyone give up their freedom to become part of an organised state? In this reading from his book Philosophy: The Classics, Nigel Warburton outlines Thomas Hobbes' central arguments from Leviathan.||6 6 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanDescartes - Meditations||Can I know anything for certain? Can I even be sure that I exist? Descartes pushed scepticism to its limits in his Meditations. Nigel Warburton explains Descartes' key ideas and some of the criticisms that can be levelled against them.||30 5 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanMachiavelli - The Prince||Is this just a handbook for psychopaths, or a satirical attack on his contemporaries, or did Machiavelli have a moral message? In this reading from his book Philosophy: The Classics, Nigel Warburton explains the central themes from Machiavelli's great...||24 5 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanBoethius - The Consolation of Philosophy||What consolation can Philosophy provide to a condemned man? Boethius wrote The Consolation of Philosophy while awaiting torture and execution. He imagines Philosophy visiting him personified as a woman. Philosophy explains to him how the Wheel of...||19 5 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanAristotle - Nicomachean Ethics||'How should we live?' This is a fundamental question for all of us. In his Nicomachean Ethics Aristotle attempted to answer it. Listen to author Nigel Warburton's summary of the main themes of the book in this reading from his book Philosophy: The...||15 5 07||Free||View In iTunes|
||CleanPlato - The Republic||Plato's Republic is one of the great works in philosophy. Hear how Plato thought society should be organised and why he wanted to ban representational art. Nigel Warburton reads the first chapter of his book Philosophy: The Classics.||11 5 07||Free||View In iTunes|
Basic but interesting
If like me you've always wanted to know a little more about philosophy, but have never quite managed to find a spare year to read Plato, this is a good compromise. I've been listening to them as I've cycled into work. Thought-provoking stuff. There is a limit of course to how far you can go in a 10 or 20 minute mini-lecture to explain whole, dense books, and their criticisms, but this seems to me to capture the basics in a comprehensible way. I hope this will get others to put free educational stuff on itunes too.
A masterpiece- thank you
Well constructed and presented in a clear and concise manner for all budding thinkers. Enjoy...
Understandably perhaps, philosophy's a pretty complex subject- but these podcasts are great for giving the listener the basic ideas behind each of the works discussed. That said, Nigel does manage pack a lot in to each podcast so I find myself going back and listening again; fortunately the ideas are covered in a way which isn't too simplistic or too complex (both of which would put me off!). In short, these are interesting and thought provoking introductions which make a good first step for anyone like me who is new to the subject.