Tuesday, February 02, 2021

Philosophy Through Science Fiction Stories: YouTube Discussion with Joseph Orosco

I had a fun chat last weekend about the relationship between philosophy and science fiction, with Joseph Orosco at the Annares Project for Alternative Futures.  

Full conversation here.  Among other things, we discussed:

07:14: Science fiction in philosophical pedagogy vs. science fiction as itself a way of doing philosophy.

11:15: Philosophy as not just about advancing positions, but also a means of exploring positions (without necessarily advancing any) or provoking doubt and wonder, and the value of science fiction on this vision of philosophy.

12:40: Philosophical thinking as a spectrum from very abstract claims (e.g., "maximize overall happiness") through paragraph-long thought experiments all the way to fully developed fictions that engage the emotions and social cognition.

20:25: Imagination as the core of philosophy: Abstract claims are empty except insofar as they are fleshed out imaginatively through examples.

28:10: The philosophical and imaginative differences among the genres of "literary fiction", science fiction, and speculative fiction generally.

33:00: The philosophical and sociological aims of Philosophy Through Science Fiction Stories: Exploring the Boundaries of the Possible.

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