Freedom vs security: freedom at any cost?

2 minutes

What are we willing to sacrifice to feel safe?

Among the thinkers who weighed in on the theory of the social contract, the philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) took the position that freedom is good, but security is better. Now we must ask whether the likes of Edward Snowden and Julian Assange are justified in their efforts to expose far-reaching government surveillance operations, or whether intelligence agencies are just taking the necessary safety measures to respond to an increasingly volatile world. This animated short video boils down the complex question of freedom vs security to its most essential, asking what are we prepared to give up to feel safe.

Video by BBC Radio 4

Script: Nigel Warburton

Animation: Andrew Park

Video/History

The amazing and awful outcome of releasing over a million balloons into the sky

7 minutes

ORIGINAL
Video/Meaning & the Good Life

How the Stoic embrace of death can help us get a grip on life

5 minutes

Video/Physics

How the ‘identity agnostic’ neutrino exists in three states all at once

3 minutes

Video/Ethics

Pain leads to empathy and self-preservation: should we make robots ‘feel’ it?

12 minutes

Essay/History of Ideas

The anger of Achilles

Homer’s warrior is no mere tragic human figure: fuelled by anger, he is at once a man of honour and a sword of the gods

C D C Reeve

Idea/History of Ideas

Before you can be with others, first learn to be alone

Jennifer Stitt

Essay/Philosophy of Mind

I attend, therefore I am

You are only as strong as your powers of attention, and other uncomfortable truths about the self

Carolyn Dicey Jennings

Idea/Ethics

Should a rapist get Viagra or a robber get a cataracts op?

Tom Douglas

Video/Meaning & the Good Life

Late in life, Fred finds joy – and a ‘rhythm in all things’ – through tap dance

6 minutes