Monday, March 27, 2017

PQED's Institute for Philosophy in Public Life news and events

IPPL newsletter, March 26, 2017

The Public Philosopher
The latest news from The Institute for Philosophy in Public Life and Why? Radio.

The Institute for Philosophy and Public Life offers a wide range of free activities and resources open to everyone with an interest in philosophy. We have modernized our web portal to make it easier to navigate, particularly on mobile phones. We have also created a new website for prospective philosophy majors to help convinced skeptical parents that philosophy degree holders are competitive in today's job market. And, as usual, we offer both in-person and radio-based opportunities for people to come together and explore philosophy in a supportive and non-adversarial environment. 

Live Events                                                          

“Will making college free improve education?”

Thursday, March 30, 4 p.m.
UND Chester Fritz Library
East Asian Room (3rd floor)

Click here for a map to the library
Join IPPL as we formally present Katy Ramey with her scholarship award as the first ever winner of the Eliot Glassheim Essay Award on Capitalism and the Common Good. Share snacks and coffee as she reads her winning essay, then responds to commentary by IPPL's intern Sam Amendolar. Discussion will follow. Audience discussion will follow. 

Senior Citizens’ Philosophy Discussion Group
April 17 (note later date)
5:00-6:30 pm
Bully Brew Coffee Shop
Each month, an engaging group of philosophy enthusiasts get together to consider how philosophical assumptions have changed during their lifetimes. In the two years since this group began, it has expanded to include people of all ages.  

This month's topic: “Should studying abroad be a mandatory part of every American’s education?”


Visit IPPL’s new, mobile-enabled, modernized, website and archives.

IPPL and Why? Radio have completely revamped their website. It has intuitive navigation, works perfectly on mobile devices, and is cleaner and easier to read. It still has all the same resources: a complete archive of past Why? Radio episodes, and links to streaming audio, IPPL projects, and all the other material IPPL publishes online. Please visit and explore.

The URL remains the same: Or, if you want to go directly to the Why? Radio homepage, you can still use We do recommend that regular visitors update their bookmarks for particular episodes or projects. Those addresses have been revised to fit the new website..

“Philosophy Is a Great Major!”
A powerful new online resource for students.

They told you that philosophy majors don’t get jobs. They told you that you should practice asking “do you want fries with that?” They told you philosophy wasn’t about real-world skills. They were wrong.

Explore the incredible employment- and salary-statistics of philosophy degree holders. Share a site designed to persuade everyone that philosophy is a great, employable, and lucrative major. Submit your own story to help show the world that philosophy is not frivolous, but is a useful tool for whatever profession its students choose.

This new website has hit a nerve. In its first two weeks alone, PIAGM received 25,000 views and has more than a hundred backlinks. See what the fuss is about. Visit 

Radio & Podcast                                                               

On the next Why? Radio:
April 9, 5 pm central

“Can ordinary people understand advanced logic?”
with guest Otávio Bueno

Every discipline has its technical side; philosophy has logic. The deeper you get into it, the more mathematical and, frankly, the more indecipherable it seems. On the next Why? Radio, we’re going to look at this logic and ask whether it really is only for specialists.

This episode will be prerecorded, but we welcome your questions in advance via Twitter:
@whyradiohsow, Facebook:, email:,,or in our chat room at

Listen on Prairie Public radio or
stream at our

The most recent Why? Radio
is now online. 

"Can we know things better?"
with guest Ernest Sosa

We live in the days of “alternative facts,” what does this say about human knowledge? People think that climate change is a myth, even though most scientists claim the evidence for it is overwhelming. What does this tell us about our ability to know what we know?

To answer these questions, Why? Radio looks past the facts and the disagreements to examine the human faculty of knowledge itself. In today’s episode we introduce and explore epistemology–the philosophical investigation into the nature and limits of knowledge.

Have you heard this one?
Revisit a previous episode of Why? Radio. 

“The Intelligence in Everyday Work” with guest Mike Rose.
Originally broadcast: November, 2014.

Mike Rose’s mother was a waitress. She worked for years negotiating the complex world of planning around, strategizing about, delivering to, and socializing with customers. She had to master timing, memory, efficiency, and psychology, but if you asked just about anyone, they would have said her work involved no deep thought at all. She had to master timing, memory, efficiency, and psychology, but if you asked just about anyone, they would have said her work involved no deep thought at all.

In his important book The Mind at Work. Mike challenges the idea that waitressing is thoughtless, while also looking at the complex intellect of hairdressers, electricians, carpenters, and others in similar professions. This episode of Why? asks us to relearn everything we claim to know about manual laborers, and reexamine our assumptions about the role of thinking in jobs.


Donate to Why? Radio and receive the gift of music.

All the changes we are announcing and all of the events we create cost money, yet its all free to anyone who wants to participate. We never charge for entry, but we are still on a very limited budget. IPPL and Why? Radio exist almost entirely on private donations. So, we need you to help us continue our work. Your contribution is tax deductible and because all of Why? Radio’s guest volunteer their time (we have never paid for an interview), you donation goes a long way.

As a gift, we’d like to offer you CDs from our favorite musician, world-jazz flutist Mark Weinstein. You hear him every time you listen to our show; his music is our soundtrack. He has donated a wide range of albums; they are yours for free.
To see what gifts you get and our budget details,
click here.

To go directly to our secure donations site,
click here.

Thank you for your donation and thank you for supporting IPPL and Why/ Radio.

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