What does Anthony Grayling think about atheism? Adrian Moore about infinity? For the last three years, some of the world's leading philosophers have held forth on their favorite topics on the immensely popular website philosophybites.com. The site now features more than one hundred short conversations, has had some 5 million downloads to date, and is listened to all over the globe.
Philosophy Bites brings together the twenty-five best interviews from this hugely successful website. Leading philosophers--including Simon Blackburn, Alain de Botton, Will Kymlicka, Alexander Nehamas, and more than twenty others--discuss a wide range of philosophical issues in a surprisingly lively, informal, and personal way. For instance, Peter Singer, arguably the world's leading animal rights philosopher, states that for people living in the western world, vegetarianism is the only moral choice, but he allows that this would not be the case for an Inuit who lives by killing fish--causing an animal to suffer must be balanced against the necessity to survive. Julian Savulescu talks about the "yuk factor"--the natural revulsion that keeps us from practicing incest or cannibalism--attacking its use as an argument against gay rights and abortion. Anthony Appiah discusses cosmopolitanism, the idea that emphasizes that people around the world have much in common, and that we have to be able to live with people despite our differences. And Stephen Law shows why it is unreasonable to believe in an all-powerful, all-good deity.
Time, infinity, evil, friendship, animals, wine, sport, tragedy--all of human life is here. And as these bite-sized interviews reveal, often the most brilliant philosophers are eager and able to convey their thoughts, simply and clearly, on the great ideas of philosophy.