Essay/History of Ideas

Why Spinoza still matters

At a time of religious zealotry, Spinoza’s fearless defence of intellectual freedom is more timely than ever

Steven Nadler headset Audio

Essay/Internet & Communication

The world wide cage

Technology promised to set us free. Instead it has trained us to withdraw from the world into distraction and dependency

Nicholas Carr

Idea/Rituals & Celebrations

Why we need to bring back the art of communal bathing

Jamie Mackay

Video/Sports & Games

Thrill to the motorbike hellriders who make their living on the wall of death

9 minutes

Ideas can change the world

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Video/Ecology & Environmental Sciences

What else do we lose when we lose sight of the stars?

3 minutes

Idea/Pharmaceuticals

How does LSD induce short-term psychosis but long-term optimism?

Rachel Jonas

Essay/Political Philosophy

Bruno the brave

For anyone who dares to voice dangerous ideas and risk imprisonment or exile, Giordano Bruno remains a hero

Stephanie Merritt

Idea/Social Psychology

Liberal academics are ‘open’ but are they truly tolerant?

Mark Brandt

Essay/Ethics

Execution at Happy Farm

Which world would be better: one in which all meat is grown in a lab or one which still contains humanely farmed animals?

Rhys Southan

Video/Making

The amazing man who produces iron using only wood, bark, fibre and clay

5 minutes

Popular this month

Essay/Physics

Must science be testable?

String wars among physicists have highlighted just how much science needs philosophy – and not just the amateur version

Massimo Pigliucci

Essay/Law & Justice

Prostitution is not sex work

Decriminalising the sex trade is touted as a means to empower women and rebrand a necessary service. This is utterly wrong

Kat Banyard

Essay/History

It never was golden

‘The good old days’ is a virulent falsehood that infects those whose defences have been weakened by fear and insecurity

Alan Jay Levinovitz

Essay/Psychiatry & Psychotherapy

Spiritual emergency

After decades of practising as a psychotherapist, I am convinced that our treatment of psychosis is thoroughly wrong-headed

James Carpenter

Idea/Cosmology

Gravitational waves will bring the extreme universe into view

Daniel Hoak

Essay/Art

Why people collect art

Collectors drive the art world, but what drives art collectors? It’s less about aesthetics than self-identification

Erin Thompson

Video/Fairness & Equality

On breasts, beauty and being a female journalist in the women’s movement

6 minutes

Idea/Stories & Literature

Simplicity or style: what makes a sentence a masterpiece?

Jenny Davidson

Essay/Addiction

Ageing out of drugs

Most addicts just stop using in time, without needing costly treatment. Why do some people walk away while others can’t?

Stacey McKenna

Video/Cosmology

The classic 1977 film that put the vastness of the universe into perspective

9 minutes

Idea/Race

US law has long seen people of African descent as fugitives

Manisha Sinha

Video/Social Psychology

Glory in defeat: how Japan fell in love with a racehorse who couldn’t win

19 minutes

Essay/Fertility, Pregnancy and Childbirth

The twin boom

The proportion of twins in the population has waxed and waned in human history. For the first time we understand why

Laura Spinney

Idea/Ethics

Everyone fails, but only the wise find humility

Costica Bradatan

Essay/History

It never was golden

‘The good old days’ is a virulent falsehood that infects those whose defences have been weakened by fear and insecurity

Alan Jay Levinovitz

Video/Cultures & Languages

‘Whose language is it anyway?’ The evolution of English, from ‘loaf’ to ‘LOL’

11 minutes

Idea/Mental Health

The divine fire of Philip K Dick’s religious visions

Kyle Arnold

Essay/Law & Justice

Prostitution is not sex work

Decriminalising the sex trade is touted as a means to empower women and rebrand a necessary service. This is utterly wrong

Kat Banyard

Video/Architecture & Landscape

Rethinking architecture for the dead: views from the world’s tallest cemetery

7 minutes