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Latest Popular

Politics & Government

Millions of Russians and eastern Europeans now believe that they were better off under communism. What does this signify?

Kristen R Ghodsee & Scott Sehon

The last whalers

Men from the Shetland Islands worked the whaling expeditions to the Antarctic. Until the whales were gone

Lyndsie Bourgon

The spirit molecule

The theory that the brain produces its own psychedelic compound provokes pop-culture enthusiasm and scientific controversy

Graham St John

Love & Friendship
Embracing the robot

Robot relationships need not be kinky, exploitative or fake. In fact they might give human relationships a helpful boost

John Danaher

Earth Science
The shape of life

The ancient Earth was profoundly alien. How do we distinguish between the living and non-living in the fossil record?

Sophia Roosth

Political Philosophy
A history of alienation

In the postwar period it was understood to be the fundamental malaise of modern life. Why aren’t we ‘alienated’ any more?

Martin Jay

What’s the best option?

It seems only logical: if A is better than B, and B is better than C, then A is better than C. Right? Not necessarily

Larry Temkin

Stories & Literature
Thus spake Albert

You probably know a quote from him. He probably never said it. How did Einstein become a touchstone of all that is wise?

Andrew Robinson

Beauty & Aesthetics
The copy is the original

In China and Japan, temples may be rebuilt and ancient warriors cast again. There is nothing sacred about the ‘original’

Byung-Chul Han

History of Ideas
I and Thou

When we encounter another individual truly as a person, not as an object for use, we become fully human: Martin Buber

M M Owen

The outsider

As a philosopher, I can’t conceal my class. But I prefer the counsel of my grandmother to platitudes about ‘impostor syndrome’

Amy Olberding

On prejudice

An 18th-century creole slaveholder invented the idea of ‘racial prejudice’ to defend diversity among a slave-owning elite

Blake Smith

History of Ideas
Two’s a crowd

Zany and earnest, political yet puckish, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari were philosophy’s most improbable duo

Edward Thornton

Cultures & Languages
Did Homo erectus speak?

Early hominins who sailed across oceans left indirect evidence that they might have been the first to use language

Daniel Everett

Values & Beliefs
Slow Thought: a manifesto

We need a philosophy of Slow Thought to ease thinking into a more playful and porous dialogue about what it means to live

Vincenzo Di Nicola

Animal agents

Can they shape their own lives? Or the course of history? It's time to reconsider the significance of animal agency

Amanda Rees

Future of Technology
Algorithmic wilderness

Robo-bees and drone-seeded forests: can technology mend our broken relationship with the natural world?

Henry Mance

Mental Health
The usefulness of dread

My anxiety has been lifelong but I would not wish it away. It has made me the philosopher – and person – that I am today

Samir Chopra

Beauty & Aesthetics
Against popular culture

For Adorno, popular culture is not just bad art – it enslaves us to repetition and robs us of our aesthetic freedom

Owen Hulatt

Confidence tricks

The financial world is a theatrical production, abundantly lubricated by that magical elixir of illusionists: confidence

Matt Seybold

The five-paragraph fetish

Writing essays by a formula was meant to be a step on the way. Now it’s the stifling goal for student and scholar alike

David Labaree

Guns and the British empire

Eighteenth-century Indian arms were as sophisticated as European. Then came the British Empire to drive industry backwards

Priya Satia

Human Evolution
To automate is human

It’s not tools, culture or communication that make humans unique but our knack for offloading dirty work onto machines

Antone Martinho-Truswell

Why we love tyrants

Psychoanalysis explains how authoritarians energise hatred, self-pity and delusion while promising heaven on Earth

David Livingstone Smith

Philosophy of Science
Is the Universe a conscious mind?

Cosmopsychism might seem crazy, but it provides a robust explanatory model for how the Universe became fine-tuned for life

Philip Goff

Teachers and students

Medieval people knew that love and pain and dread and desire made the experience of education possible, and could also sow ruin

Irina Dumitrescu

Ecology & Environmental Sciences
The African Anthropocene

The Anthropocene feels different depending on where you are – too often, the ‘we’ of the world is white and Western

Gabrielle Hecht

Nature & Environment
Consider the rooster

The thugs of the barnyard, roosters were bred to fight and strut. Does our highly tamed world have room for them any more?

Amanda Giracca

Local links run the world

Networks regulate everything from ant colonies and middle schools to epidemics and the internet. Here’s how they work

Deborah M Gordon

History of Science
Life in hollow Earth

Is Earth inside the Universe, or vice versa? Since we can grasp only a model of reality, how do we know what’s real?

Joel Frohlich