9pm - 10pm
Philosophy Talk is radio that celebrates the value of the examined life. Week after week, our two philosopher-hosts invite listeners to join them in conversations about a wide variety of issues-- ranging from popular culture to our most deeply held beliefs about science, morality, and the human condition. Philosophy Talk challenges listeners to identify and question their assumptions and to think about things in new ways. We are dedicated to reasoned conversation driven by human curiousity. Philosophy Talks is broadly accessible, intellectually stimulating and, most of all, fun!
Philosophy talk is hosted by Ken Taylor, Professor of Philosophy at Stanford University, and John Perry, Professor of Philosophy at the University of California at Riverside and Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at Stanford University.
December 11, 2013
Cooperation and Conflict
The Prisoner’s Dilemma is a problem studied in game theory that shows how two people might not cooperate even if it's in both their best interests to do so. It highlights the inherent tension between individual interests and a larger society. Should you pick up your trash at the lunch table? Should you push in your chair after getting up? Should you take performance-enhancing drugs? Should you preserve the earth for the next generation? John and Ken find their mutual interests with Cristina Bicchieri from the University of Pennsylvania, author of The Grammar of Society: The Nature and Dynamics of Social Norms.
December 18, 2013
Do Religions Deserve Special Status?
In most Western democracies, religions are exempt from certain rules and regulations that most other organizations have to follow. For example, in the US, religious organizations are not required to pay taxes or follow non-discrimination employment laws. Some faithful go so far as to argue that their religious freedom means they shouldn’t have to provide birth control to their employees. But does religion truly deserve this preferential treatment? Should the demands for legal exemption based on religious freedom be treated any differently than those based on moral conscience? What special status, if any, should religion have in the eyes of the law? Jon and Ken grant guest status to Brian Leiter from the University of Chicago, author of Why Tolerate Religions?
December 25, 2013
Tenth Anniversary Special
Philosophy Talk debuted on KALW 91.7 FM in San Francisco in August 2003, with regular broadcasts beginning in early 2004. Over the course of a decade the Philosophers, their guests, and their listeners have discussed and debated everything from the meaning of life to pre-emptive military strikes and baseball. To celebrate ten years on the air, John and Ken listen back to some of their favorite conversations with the writers and thinkers who have joined them on the program, and they look ahead to the ongoing challenges of thinking hard on the radio.
January 1, 2014
Trust and Mistrust
If we couldn't trust each other, our lives would be very different. We trust strangers not to harm us, we trust our friends to take care of our most prized possessions, we even trust politicians (sometimes) to come through on their campaign promises. But trust may also come at a high cost: it can leave us vulnerable to lies, deception, and blackmail. So is it reasonable for us to be so trusting? And how should we treat those who trust us? John and Ken put their trust in Stanford philosopher Jorah Dannenberg, in a program recorded live at the Marsh Theater in San Francisco.
January 8, 2014
The Examined Year - 2013
A new year offers an opportunity to reflect on the significant events of the previous year. But what ideas and events took shape over the past twelve months that have prompted us to question our assumptions and to think about things in new ways? Join John, Ken, and their special guests as they celebrate the examined year with a philosophical look back at 2013.