Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the history of ideas about freedom. Read more
What Does It Mean to Be Free?
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the history of ideas about freedom.
Philosopher Angie Hobbs on Positive and Negative Freedom
Angie Hobbs on Isaiah Berlin's distinction between positive and negative freedom.
Lawyer Harry Potter on Individual Freedom and the State
Barrister Harry Potter on John Stuart Mill's ideas about individual freedom and the state.
Theologian Giles Fraser on Religious Freedom
Theologian Giles Fraser believes true freedom comes from accepting constraints in life.
Neuroscientist Paul Broks on Free Will and the Brain
Paul Broks brings neuroscience to the philosophical question of whether we have free will.
Why Are Things Beautiful?
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss different ideas of beauty.
Barry Smith on the Philosophy of Good Taste
Philosopher Barry Smith on David Hume's ideas about cultivating good taste.
Vicky Neale on the Mathematics of Beauty
Mathematician Vicky Neale on the mathematics of beauty and the beauty of mathematics.
Historian Simon Schaffer on Beauty and Evolution
Historian Simon Schaffer on whether evolutionary science explains the existence of beauty.
Philosopher Angie Hobbs on Beauty and Morality
Philosopher Angie Hobbs examines whether beautiful things are also moral.
How Can I Tell Right From Wrong?
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss different ideas of morality.
Theologian Giles Fraser on Moral character
Giles Fraser on moral character and Aristotle's Virtue ethics
Neuro-psychologist Paul Broks on Morality and the Brain
Neuropsychologist Paul Broks on moral decisions and the brain.
Lawyer Harry Potter on Morality and the Law
Lawyer Harry Potter examines whether the law should enforce good morals.
Philosopher Angie Hobbs on the Value of Conscience
Philosopher Angie Hobbs on the value of conscience and moral intuition.
Melvin Bragg and guests discuss the work of key philosophers and their theories.
How Do I Tell Right from Wrong?
How Did Everything Begin?
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the origins of life, the universe and everything.
What Makes Us Human?
Melvyn Bragg and guests explore the philosophical question of what makes us human.
How Has Technology Changed Us?
Five programmes examining how technology has changed us, from flint axe to satnav.
How Do I Live a Good Life?
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss how to live a good life.
What Is Justice?
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss ideas about justice.
What Does It Mean to Be Me?
Melvyn Braggs asks 'What does it mean to be me?', with the help of four guests.
How Should We Live Together?
Melvyn Braggs asks 'How should we live together?', with the help of four guests.
What Is Love?
Melvyn Braggs and guests discuss the history of ideas around love.
How Can I Know Anything at All?
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss how we can know anything at all.
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the origins of everything.
Jessica Frazier on Creation Myths
How did the world begin? Jessica Frazier canvases the views of the great religions.
Astronomer Carole Mundell on the Big Bang
What put the bang in the Big Bang? Can scientists tell us what happened before creation?
Theologian Giles Fraser on Thomas Aquinas
Theologian Giles Fraser on brilliant medieval scholar St Thomas Aquinas.
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss what makes us human.
Simon Schaffer on humans, apes and Carl Linnaeus
Simon Schaffer on botanist Carl Linnaeus who first classified humans among the apes
Catharine Edwards on Seneca and facing death.
Only humans know they will die. Catharine Edwards on the Stoic philosopher Seneca
Barry Smith on Noam Chomsky and Human Language
Philosopher Barry Smith on Noam Chomsky and human language
Giles Fraser on Wittgenstein and Blade Runner
Theologian Giles Fraser on Wittgenstein and Blade Runner
Historian Justin Champion on William Whiston's Comet Theory
Historian Justin Champion on William Whiston, the spiritual father of the Philae lander.
Melvyn Bragg is joined by Tom Chatfield, Gabriel Weston, Justin Champion and Matt Pope.
Writer Tom Chatfield: Has technology rewired our brains?
Tom Chatfield on whether modern technology enhances or diminishes us.
Historian Justin Champion on Francis Bacon
Historian Justin Champion on 17th-century polymath Francis Bacon.
Surgeon Gabriel Weston on medical technology
Surgeon Gabriel Weston sees how medical technology has changed us.
Archaeologist Matt Pope on tools and human evolution
Archaeologist Matt pope looks at the role of technology in early human evolution.
Philosopher Jules Evans on Aristotle and Flourishing
Philosopher Jules Evans asks Gus O'Donnell how to measure the good life.
Justin Champion on Max Weber and the Protestant Ethic
Justin Champion looks at the roots of our culture's belief in the moral power of hard work
Naomi Appleton on the Buddha's Four Noble Truths
Naomi Appleton explores the Buddha's Four Noble Truths.
Ayn Rand and Selfishness
Neuropsychologist Paul Broks looks at the idea of leading a good life by being selfish.
Barrister Harry Potter on Deterrence
In this edition of a series of programmes on justice, Harry Potter examines deterrence.
Philosopher Angie Hobbs on the Veil of Ignorance
Angie Hobbs, Leif Wenar and David Runciman debate and explore the ideas of John Rawls.
Thomas Hobbes and Civil Disobedience
Criminologist David Wilson looks at Thomas Hobbes and his 'social contract' theory.
Historian Alice Taylor on Habeas Corpus
Historian Alice Taylor on the slippery justice of extrajudicial detention.
Barry Smith, Paul Broks, AL Kennedy and Jules Evans discuss the self.
Paul Broks on John Locke and Personal Identity
Paul Broks asks how we can be sure we are the same person that we were yesterday.
Writer AL Kennedy on Sartre and the Individual
Writer AL Kennedy explores existentialist ideas about the individual.
Philosopher Jules Evans on Jung and the Mind
Jules Evans explores Jung and the shadow inside all of us.
Philosopher Barry Smith on Descartes and Consciousness
Philosopher Barry Smith explores ideas about consciousness.
Melvyn Bragg and guests debate how we should live together.
Historian Justin Champion on Toleration
Professor Justin Champion examines Locke's Letter on Toleration.
Economist Kate Barker on the Free Market
Is a free market the best foundation for a fair, dynamic society?
Philosopher Angie Hobbs on Plato's Philosopher Kings
Angie Hobbs asks if the ideal state would be run by philosophers not politicians.
Philosopher Timothy Secret on Ancestor Worship
Timothy Secret on Confucius. To live well together we must first consider the dead.
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the history of ideas around love.
Classicist Edith Hall on Aristophanes in Plato
Classicist Edith Hall on Aristophanes's explanation of love.
Theologian Giles Fraser on Altruism
Giles Fraser discusses gene theory versus altruism with Tom Stoppard and Armand Leroi.
Psychotherapist Mark Vernon on Freud
What is love? Psychotherapist Mark Vernon looks at Freud's ideas on the Greek god Eros.
Writer Lisa Appignanesi on the Love of Children
How should we love our children? Philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau had some great ideas.
Lawyer Harry Potter on Eyewitness Testimony
Barrister Harry Potter on whether we can believe our eyes.
Physicist Tara Shears on Falsification
How can we separate real science from mumbo jumbo? Physicist Tara Shears investigates.
Philosopher Clare Carlisle on Reality and Perception
Clare Carlisle grapples with Bishop Berkley's idea that objects only exist in our minds.
Neuropsychologist Paul Broks on Wittgenstein
Paul Broks looks at the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein and the problem of 'other minds'.
Crime and Punishment
Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss Dostoevsky's novel. The hero thinks he's above the law....
Friends of the Fairies
Scotland's war on witches,Satan & even fairies. Meet the healers and their spirit guides.
Megan Phelps Roper
Megan Phelps Roper talks to Emma Barnett about life in the Westboro Baptist Church.
Michaella McCollum: Why I smuggled cocaine into Peru.
Michaella McCollum talks to Emma Barnett about her time in jail in Peru for smuggling.
The story of the Coventry Blitz told by those who lived through it.