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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

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

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

Confidence tricks

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

Matt Seybold

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

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


Contrary to recent opinion, there is such a thing as the self, and it is empirically amenable to scientific investigation

Şerife Tekin

Stories & Literature
The good guy/bad guy myth

Pop culture today is obsessed with the battle between good and evil. Traditional folktales never were. What changed?

Catherine Nichols

The salacious Middle Ages

Medieval people feared death by celibacy as much as venereal disease, and practiced complex sexual health regimens

Katherine Harvey

Philosophy of Mind
Are you sleepwalking now?

Given how little control we have of our wandering minds, how can we cultivate real mental autonomy?

Thomas Metzinger