Albert Camus: Soccer Goalie

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Albert Camus, born 101 years ago today, once said,“After many years in which the world has afforded me many experiences, what I know most surely in the long run about morality and obligations, I owe to football.”
He was referring to his college days when he played goalie for the Racing Universitaire Algerios (RUA) junior team.


What Are Literature, Philosophy & History For? Alain de Botton Explains with Monty Python-Style Videos

≡ Category: Education, History, Literature, Philosophy |Leave a Comment

Once upon a time, questions about the use-value of art were the height of philistinism. “All art is quite useless,” wrote the aesthete Oscar Wilde, presaging the attitudes of modernists to come. Explaining this statement in a letter to a perplexed fan, Wilde opined that art “is not meant to instruct, or to influence action in any way.


27 More “Essential Films for the Student of Philosophy,” As Suggested By Open Culture Readers

≡ Category: Film, Philosophy |8 Comments

A post of ours last week on philosophical films piqued the interest of many a film-loving, philosophically-inclined reader, and raised an important and perhaps unanswerable question: just what is a “philosophical film”? Does such a creature even exist? Reader Albert Hoffman suggested that “a really great movie always is a philosophical movie


28 Important Philosophers List the Books That Influenced Them Most During Their College Days

≡ Category: Books, Philosophy |10 Comments

The web site Demasiado Aire recently asked “some of the world’s most important philosophers which three books influenced them the most while undergraduate students.” And, from what we can tell, they got a good response.


Walter Benjamin’s Radio Plays for Kids (1929-1932)

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Many novelists and poets—from Oscar Wilde to Neil Gaiman—have excelled at reaching adults as well as kids, but it’s incredibly rare to find an academic who can do so. Two of the few exceptions that come to mind are the ever popular C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien, both well-respected Oxford scholars and more-than-able children’s authors.


44 Essential Movies for the Student of Philosophy

≡ Category: Film, Philosophy |38 Comments

What comes to mind when you hear the phrase “philosophical film”? The Matrix, most likely, an obvious example of a movie—or franchise—that explores timeless questions: Who are we? What is reality? Are our lives nothing more than elaborate simulations programmed by hyperintelligent supercomputers? Okay, that last one may be of more recent v


Hear Michel Foucault’s Final UC Berkeley Lectures, “Discourse and Truth” (1983)

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We’ve written quite a bit in previous posts about French philosopher Michel Foucault’s time in Berkeley, California during the final years of his life, and for good reason.


“Heidegger in the Kitchen”: Alain de Botton’s Video Essay Explains the Philosopher’s Concept of Being

≡ Category: Philosophy |Leave a Comment

Are you feeling doomed and insignificant, like a shrimp destined for the frying pan? Well, then, we have just the thing for you. Last week we featured three introductory philosophy videos from Alain de Botton’s School of Life, on Martin Heidegger, the Stoics, and Epicurus.


Stephen Fry Explains Humanism in 4 Animated Videos: Happiness, Truth and the Meaning of Life & Death

≡ Category: Life, Philosophy, Religion |7 Comments

Answers to life’s big questions don’t come cheap, but they very often come free, or at least we feel they should. Which answers you find compelling among your available options is up to you.


Alain de Botton’s School of Life Presents Animated Introductions to Heidegger, The Stoics & Epicurus

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Why is Western philosophy so difficult, so abstruse, and so damned wordy? Perhaps it’s simply a matter of job security. It’s generally well-known, after all, that some of the most taciturn philosophers were also some of the poorest—Ludwig Wittgenstein, who was independently wealthy, notwithstanding.


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