The History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps — Peter Adamson’s Podcast Still Going Strong

Last August, we fea­tured Peter Adam­son’s pod­cast The His­to­ry of Phi­los­o­phy With­out Any Gaps (iTunes – RSS Feed – Web Site), a chrono­log­i­cal­ly unin­ter­rupt­ed “look at the ideas and lives of the major philoso­phers (even­tu­al­ly cov­er­ing in detail such giants as Pla­to, Aris­to­tle, Aquinas, Descartes, and Kant) as well as the less­er-known fig­ures of the tra­di­tion.” Con­tin­u­ing at the rate of one episode a week, Adam­son and his guest philo­soph­i­cal experts have since cov­ered names like Lucretius, Seneca, and Plutarch. They’ve most recent­ly reached Alexan­der of Aphro­disias, an espe­cial­ly astute ancient com­men­ta­tor on Aris­to­tle and oppo­nent of Sto­ic atti­tudes toward fate; Quin­til­ian, Lucian, Themistius, and the inter­play between rhetoric and phi­los­o­phy in the Roman Empire; and the emer­gence of astron­o­my, ush­ered in by Ptole­my dur­ing a time when observers still had much to say about astrol­o­gy.

Don’t miss the episodes where Adam­son brings in spe­cial­ists on the par­tic­u­lar philoso­pher, philo­soph­i­cal sub­field, or quirk in philo­soph­i­cal his­to­ry to which his pod­cast­ing jour­ney brings him. Since our last post on the show, we’ve heard Richard Sorab­ji talk about time and eter­ni­ty in Aris­to­tle, James War­ren on Epi­cure­anism, and Raphael Wolf on Cicero, to name but a few. Such is Adamson’s atten­tion to detail — and ded­i­ca­tion to the Zeno’s Para­dox-rem­i­nis­cent cause of pure con­ti­nu­ity — that, after putting out 85 episodes, he remains in the ancient world. Imag­ine the boun­ty of dis­cus­sion when he reach­es, say, the eigh­teenth cen­tu­ry, let alone the twen­ti­eth. To pre­pare your­self for that, you’d bet­ter start lis­ten­ing now; a show express­ly cre­at­ed with­out gaps must, it seems only nat­ur­al, be expe­ri­enced with­out them.

Relat­ed con­tent:

The Par­tial­ly Exam­ined Life: A Phi­los­o­phy Pod­cast

Phi­los­o­phy Bites: Pod­cast­ing Ideas From Pla­to to Sin­gu­lar­i­ty Since 2007

55 Free Phi­los­o­phy Cours­es

Col­in Mar­shall hosts and pro­duces Note­book on Cities and Cul­ture. Fol­low him on Twit­ter at @colinmarshall.

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