show episodes
 
The Partially Examined Life is a podcast by some guys who were at one point set on doing philosophy for a living but then thought better of it. Each episode, we pick a short text and chat about it with some balance between insight and flippancy. You don't have to know any philosophy, or even to have read the text we're talking about to (mostly) follow and (hopefully) enjoy the discussion. For links to the texts we discuss and other info, check out www.partiallyexaminedlife.com. We also featu ...
 
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show series
 
On this week’s Spoiler Specials, Slate staffers Allegra Frank and Rebecca Onion spoil The Lost Daughter. Leda Caruso (Olivia Colman) is a college professor on a sunny holiday in Greece. When she meets Nina (Dakota Johnson) and her young daughter on the beach, her observations prompt dark memories of her own early motherhood. Note: As the title indi…
 
Continuing on Dialogues on Metaphysics and Religion (1688), ch. 1-4. We talk about the character of the intelligible world, how we generate general concepts, the existence of God, seeing God, original sin, and more. If you're not hearing the full version of this part of the discussion, sign up via one of the options described at partiallyexaminedli…
 
Did it make sense for Steven Spielberg to remake one of our nation's most beloved musicals (with music by Bernstein and Sondheim!), attempting to fix the parts that did not age well politically? Is the new version a modern classic or a doomed Frankenstein? Your host Mark Linsenmayer is joined by Broadway scholar, theater critic, and actor Ron Fassl…
 
Fellini called his film "La Strada" a dangerous representation of his identity, and had a nervous breakdown just before completing its shooting. Perhaps this identity, and its vulnerability, have something to do with the film’s representation of a disappointed hope that love might vanquish pride, if properly assisted by the forces of playfulness an…
 
On Dialogues on Metaphysics and Religion (1688), ch. 1-4. We walk through M's rationalist (post-Descartes, pre-Leibniz) epistemology with its surprising implications for the metaphysics of causality and the role of God in nature. Part two of this episode is only going to be available to you if you sign up at partiallyexaminedlife.com/support or via…
 
On the Spoiler Special podcast, Slate critics discuss movies, the occasional TV show, and, once in a blue moon, another podcast, in full spoiler-filled detail. This week, Slate staffers Allegra Frank and Sam Adams spoil Spider-Man: No Way Home. Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is grappling with being identified as Spider-Man. This not only has consequenc…
 
Welcome to an extra special, intentionally public edition of Nightcap to catch you up on what Mark, Wes, Seth, and Dylan are all up to personally and intellectually and hash out what we want to potentially cover on the show over the next year. Get this ad-free by signing up to support us via partiallyexaminedlife.com/support. Sponsors: Have a donat…
 
Continuing on "What Is Man" (1905). We work through Twain's metaphors for human nature, say what he means by "instinct," contemplate his notion of identity and why he thinks you are apparently different from your body-machine, and gauge the practical upshot of his stances. If you're not hearing the full version of this part of the discussion, sign …
 
On the Spoiler Specials podcast, Slate critics discuss movies, the occasional TV show, and, once in a blue moon, another podcast, in full spoiler-filled detail. This week, Slate movie critic Dana Stevens is joined by Vox editor-at-large and co-creator of the podcast Arden, Emily VanDerWerff. Twenty years after the events of The Matrix Revolutions, …
 
On "What Is Man" (1905). Twain describes a person as a machine. We have no free will and always act to win our own self-approval. This was a bleak enough picture that the essay was not printed until after Twain's death. Part two of this episode is only going to be available to you if you sign up at partiallyexaminedlife.com/support or via Apple Pod…
 
Continuing on "What Is Love?" (1992). We consider B's account of love as resolution of a paradox: The positions of man and woman in no way overlap, yet all truth is generic, i.e. accessible to everyone. Love makes it happen! If you're not hearing the full version of this part of the discussion, sign up via one of the options described at partiallye…
 
On the Spoiler Specials podcast, Slate critics discuss movies, the occasional TV show, and, once in a blue moon, another podcast, in full spoiler-filled detail. This week, Slate movie critic Dana Stevens is joined by Slate features editor Jeffrey Bloomer to spoil the latest Jane Campion movie, Power of the Dog. When domineering rancher Phil (Benedi…
 
On "What Is Love," which is ch. 11 of Conditions (1992). We see what it means to call love a "truth procedure": It's a new way of seeing, through the eyes of the Two, not the merger of two souls or the loving of god through another. Does B's pseudo-mathematical language about this make sense? Part two of this episode is only going to be available t…
 
In literature, the choice to become a vampire is a metaphor for transformative experiences. On this episode, we bring you a story from Slate's Hi-Phi Nation podcast, which explores problems in contemporary philosophy through story. From real-life blood suckers, to Lord Byron, to Twilight, vampires are a tool for philosophers to think about othernes…
 
Continuing on Conditions, "The (Re)turn of Philosophy Itself." What makes philosophy possible? The four "conditions," i.e. mathematics, politics, art, and love, generate the truths, and philosophy is the pincers that gather these together in thought. But how exactly? If you're not hearing the full version of this part of the discussion, sign up via…
 
On the Spoiler Specials podcast, Slate critics discuss movies, the occasional TV show, and, once in a blue moon, another podcast, in full spoiler-filled detail. This week, Slate movie critic Dana Stevens is joined by Slate staff writer Heather Schwedel and New Yorker staff writer Rachel Syme to spoil the latest movie from Ridley Scott, House of Guc…
 
When you think about the game, you lose the game. When you lose the game you must declare that you have lost the game, causing all others in your vicinity to also lose the game. That’s it, that’s the game. The game is mind game that trades on a quirk of human psychology, and is so intensely viral that it went from a college science fiction club in-…
 
On Conditions (1992), Ch. 1 "The (Re)turn of Philosophy Itself." Against post-structuralists who deny Truth, Badiou argues that truths are generated by the truth conditions (politics, art, love, and science/math) which philosophy then thinks into a unified vision. Part two of this episode is only going to be available to you if you sign up at parti…
 
Continuing on Against Method (1975) about the non-rational progress of science. Given that according to F., epistemological conformity can't proceed by an appeal to reason, how does it proceed? Through indoctrination, propaganda, and coercion, even when our goal is to encourage freedom and rationality. If you're not hearing the full version of this…
 
On Against Method (1975). In dialogue with Lakatos, Feyerabend claimed that scientific progress can not be explained rationally, so how does it progress? Is F. just arguing against the possibility of any philosophy of science? Part two of this episode is only going to be available to you if you sign up at partiallyexaminedlife.com/support or via Ap…
 
Continuing on "Falsification and the Methodology of Scientific Research Programmes" (1970). We distinguish various kinds of falsificationism and give more details about Lakatos' concept of a scientific research program. If you're not hearing the full version of this part of the discussion, sign up via one of the options described at partiallyexamin…
 
On "Falsification and the Methodology of Scientific Research Programmes" (1970). In what way is scientific progress rational? Lakatos splits the difference between Popper and Kuhn to argue that some scientific research programs are more progressive than others, meaning that they make dramatic, unexpected predictions. Part two of this episode is onl…
 
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