The debate around free will has been raging for millennia and, frankly, isn’t likely to be settled any time soon. But, as this short documentary from BBC Reel demonstrates, that doesn’t mean it isn’t a debate worth having. By interviewing leading thinkers across neuroscience, physics and moral philosophy, the UK journalist Melissa Hogenboom investigates where the intersecting debates over free will currently stand. The film surveys some of the most contentious controversies surrounding free will – from the legacy of the ‘Libet experiment’ to the concept of moral responsibility – to provide a fascinating dive into our current understanding of how and why we make the decisions we make, and what that should mean for how we understand our world.
Video by BBC Reel
Directors: Melissa Hogenboom, Pierangelo Pirak
Technology and the self
Greetings from Green Bank – the small town where modern technology is banned
Stories and literature
What makes John Keats’s ‘Ode on a Grecian Urn’ so enduringly powerful?
Far from frivolous, cuteness is a powerful – and still mysterious – force of nature
On a whirlwind morning, a couple learns if they’re facing an unplanned pregnancy
Philosophy of mind
Do we have good reasons to believe in beliefs? A radical philosophy of mind says no
In the search for life, might alien ocean worlds be a better bet than Earth-like planets?
Philosophy of religion
How a devout Catholic philosopher approaches the problem of evil
Love and friendship
When drawing your muse hundreds of times becomes an exercise in love
Thinkers and theories
Is simulation theory a way to shirk responsibility for the world we’ve created?