At last, what no one has been asking for - bros who are into philosophy. To the bros, liking philosophy doesn’t redeem painful rambling. Definitely doesn’t make you funny.
My favorite philosophy podcast
Mark, Seth, and Wes are able to take these super-heady topics and keep them super-heady, all the while making things accessible. They’re like your best nerdy friends nitpicking things with one another yet making you feel welcome at the same time. Clearly these veteran podcasters know what they’re doing, and that's why they’ve been able to do this for so long. Give it a listen, you'll love it!
I've loved listening...
to this podcast since about episode 20. The range of topics do a great job of spanning the "classics", as well as current projects that impact modern life. Besides the guys themselves being awesome, they are always generous with all of their guests.
Simply one of the best podcasts available.
Lack of insight
I only listened to the first 30 minutes of the episode on the Nichomachean Ethics. The speakers did not actually start discussing the work until the 9 minute mark, choosing instead to chat with one another about unrelated topics during that time. The primary speaker spoke only vaguely about Aristotle’s arguments, suggesting a lack of familiarity with the text. He did however give off the impression of someone who truly enjoys listening to himself talk. A second and third speaker did seem to have some knowledge of the work but again seemed to only speak vaguely about the text. The episode failed to identify Aristotle’s bridge between happiness and moral virtue. Lacking was a development of Aristotle’s argument that happiness is attained through moral virtue (rather than through the whims of fortune [health/wealth]) because something as noble as happiness could not be subject to fate, but rather must be grounded in one’s own free expression of will. As Aristotle writes, “To entrust to chance what is greatest and most noble would be a very defective arrangement.” Maybe the speakers could reread the text in advance and identify key passages to discuss?
Best philosophy podcast
I don’t want to sound very over dramatic , but the recent episode on suicide gave me a lot of perspective. I have 2 siblings that took the decision & just hearing on your different opinions was very insightful. Thank you very much. I remain a huge fan.
Host needs to shut his hole
I absolutely loved this podcast after just hearing one episode, ep. 12. One thing though, the host (I think) needs to quit cracking totally dumb and unnecessary jokes while guests are reading from texts. He really confused me and took concepts out of their context by doing this constantly, and I didn’t take him seriously. It felt like the others didn’t either. So yeah, definitely will listen again after hearing this but I hope I don’t have to be dealing with this every episode so far.
So incredibly inconsistent. Immature to say the least. Host disrespectful to guest. Seth ruined this show for me. Too analytical
Best in depth Philosophy Podcast by non-Philosophers,
When I want a shorter fantastic review of an ancient philosopher, I go with Philosophize This!, when I want to wade all the way in to the deep end, PEL is a great choice. The interaction of 3 hosts who clearly enjoy each others company is particularly nice. At the same time they never look at any big topic or philosopher with the same lense. Great stuff.
I appreciate the discussion, great way to build information.
Just found you!
I’m so happy to have just stumbled on your podcast at this late hour. A 2am ping pong match on modernity and enlightenment was just what I needed. Unfortunately, you guys are so good I won’t be falling asleep anytime soon.
Good philosophy. Bad politics.
Made it a couple dozen episodes in. Really liked the discussions on philosophy but was absolutely turned of by the politics. One of the host, can’t recall his name and really don’t want, was especially notorious for putting up straw man type arguments. I wish they would keep their politics to themselves and just discuss philosophy. Seeing how they cannot I have rated them two stars and will delete them out of my library. Their political leanings do not matter to me but I also did not start listening to a philosophy podcast to hear politics.
Insightful at times, while tedious an equal number of times. At least the guys have acute neurons and frenzied funny-ons firing simultaneously.
Most philosophically rigorous and interesting philosophy podcast
I have listened to dozens of hours of the PEL guys. All four guys come from various backgrounds which adds great conversation and insight to their discussion. They have continually opened my philosophical wonder as they bring many authors and books to the table to discuss that I might not have otherwise read or known anything about. I owe them much for great breadth and depth to my philosophical understanding.
There is no free will, so I was always going to listen
If you’re remotely interest in philosophy at all, this podcast is a must listen. If you aren’t interested in philosophy at all, this podcast will change that (also, I’m not sure how you’re seeing this)
The perfect combination of getting multiple viewpoints, covering complex topics with clarity, and not taking yourself or life too seriously. Every single episode I learn something, every episode I learn to think better, and every episode I laugh.
Too Sarcastic to be Thoughtful
The speakers began by snickering at Ayn Rand like schoolboys made uncomfortable by a sex-ed lesson. For all the listeners who requested a podcast on her, please listen to some *real* lectures by Dr. Leonard Peikoff and other Objectivist lecturers through the Ayn Rand Institute eStore.
best podcast ever
I've been listening to podcasts for more than a decade and this is the best one I've come across. It features careful readings of interesting texts by thoughtful people. The episodes are so good that I often listen to them more than once (which I rarely do with other podcasts). I've ended up reading thought provoking books that I never would have considered otherwise (most recently John Stewart Mill's "On Liberty" and Simone de Beauvoir's "Ethics of Ambiguity"). I strongly recommend The Partially Examined Life.
PEL sets the bar for philosophy podcasts.
The Partially Examined Life offers intelligent and fun discussions of diverse philosophical topics. The discoursants are fun and communicate love for inquiry and dialogue.
Does what it says on the tin
After watching the news, or listening to talking heads and politicians, it's awfully nice to hear someone reason about complex subjects, rather than irrationalizing about simple ones.
There's no lack of void.
There's no lack of thought provoking banter... and I like it!
for making this available, fascinating podcast.
Listen to the backlog of awesome shows
Pick your interest and listen.
Therefore, I am, I think
Great mix of grad level philosophy and humorous banter. Listening to Wes Alwan explain various philosophic perspectives is worth the price of admission alone. The guy is able to find something intersting and worthwhile in any book they discuss. It's like each philosophy is a special type of Pokemon to him with unique powers and abilities. The other guys are good too, I'm just saying Wes is my favorite.
Charming and Insightful
Great topics, allowing you to drift along with the conversation, or get deep into it with the readings. The hosts have great chemistry, agree or disagree they make the topics come to life.
Best podcast, period.
I love absolutely everything about this!
Really well thought out and smart
A Real Gift
Perfect for any student of any discipline!
Best source for getting the gist of books and philosophy
I just got an AP (non-tenure track) in a comparative literature department. I can finally afford to pay back this podcast for teaching me so much about critical theory about literature, power, subjectivity, process philosophy, and basic fundamentals of teaching and knowledge production. Just joined for a yearly membership to finally be a citizen. See myself as a lifer because I have a lot of episodes to pay back. Literally, I have listened to the Deleuze, Bergson, Heraclitus, Nietzsche, and Foucault episodes about 5-10 times each over a 5 year period.
Moreover, I'm going to relisten today, just to jog my memory. Being part of this community of critical readers helps me so much. Honestly, the podcast personae of Wes, Dylan, Mark, and Seth, and their guests, feel like my grad school classmates. And having these full podcasts to listen whenever I want is like having access to notes.
Thanks so much for the rigorous training. Will continue recommending to my students!
I want for you guys to keep pushing 👍🏾
classic philosophy podcast
Extremely Insightful and Entertaining
I have been listening for years and enjoy each episode. If you want to learn and have fun doing it then this is the podcast for you.
An important example of fair-mindedness
This is not just a podcast to learn facts about philosophy.
This is a podcast to learn how to fair-mindedly engage and (partially) examine the world's intellectual tradition.
Thats why its the best philosophy podcast.
Dialogue is the answer
There are several excellent philosophy podcasts available (Philosophize This! is one), but given those podcasts' lecture and/or interview format, they miss the energy, creativity, and genuine community generated by PEL's 3-5 person conversations on a variety of philosophers, philosophical works, and philosophical topics.
Dialogue is the show's method-- a playful yet respectful give-and-take, in which the podcast's regulars and guests avoid speaking over each other and instead try to help each other articulate and clarify their respective thoughts and positions about the text(s) at hand. And if you despair of the monologism of contemporary intellectual debate, then you may find that dialogue like this is the answer.
This is not a podcast to sample and judge after ten minutes, however. Genuine conversations, like genuine relationships, take time, so if you find one podcast not to your liking, try another, and try to listen to its entirety. Their episode on Ayn Rand is representative and particularly admirable. In spite of their distaste for her thought, they strive to articulate Rand's position in her own terms and in such a way that she would agree that they had represented her correctly. In so doing, they find there's no need to trash her ideas or to lacerate her with ad hominem attacks (well, there are a few richly deserved jabs), since her own ideas are themselves the worst attacks one could launch against her.
Each of the regulars-- Mark, Wes, Seth, and Dylan-- as well as the guests-- including Law Ware and Lucy Lawless (!)-- proves a distinct and reliable voice. One gets to know each speaker's ethos, and it's fun to anticipate the moves they make in each conversation, and perhaps even more fun to be surprised by their willingness to deviate from their own norms.
The productions are solid, with just enough of a home studio feel to remind you that this show is an avocation for these folks, not a vocation, though they approach the discussions with the seriousness (and serious humor) of a genuine calling. The intellectual depth and breadth are impressive, and the humor is wise, warm, and wry. It's a pleasure to witness the dialogue that PEL has been developing these several years, and I heartily recommend that others share in the conversation.
Serious explication and occasional dollops of silliness
I like it right well. The recent work on de Beauvoir, Levinas, and Rorty was most helpful. I listened to the Levinas and de Beauvoir segments twice. They're not afraid to tackle topical issues, or treat on authors not generally thought of as "philosophers". cf. the episodes on Baldwin. Listen up and learn. I have and enjoyed it.
Great podcast. I started at the beginning a couple years ago and just kept going. Nice blend of serious engagement with the content and humor. Law is the man. More Law. I would also probably donate to watch Seth recite one of those advertisements.
Brilliant at best; entertaining at least.
Great discussions from great people.
some guitar enthusiast
I would highly recommend this podcast to anyone who is interested in philosophy. Keep up the good work!
A group of guys who have been doing this for a long time, they actually put work into producing their content. It's intellectually tougher than most podcasts, and if you want to get something out of it, you'll need to pay a little more attention than just playing it in the background of your daily tasks. But for anyone who actually enjoys philosophy, this will be a good thing.
Always thought provoking(obviously).
Not for the lazy
Critical thinking at its best. Agree or disagree with the viewpoints, these discussions will make you a better citizen, better human.
Relevant and fun
I'm hooked! Discussions are friendly and lively. I always leave with a list of new, interesting topics for further review. 'Homework' is offered and explained. This podcast has quickly become my favorite!
Wonderful, courageous, enlightening and empowering.
Thank you for this great opportunity to learn. For a few years now you enrich my daily life. I don't always understand the thoughts and ideas. And am provided to be a more complete person for the exposure to all the ideas.
Please, keep up the great effort and quality work.
Rigorous, sincere, funny, life-changing
A podcast by some guys who were at one point set on doing philosophy for a living, but then thought better of it. Each episode they take a major work of philosophy and discuss it in their uniquely irreverent and ribald seminar-style. While deliberately intended for non-academic audiences, even professional philosophers love this show. Their approach is not only a model for how to read a philosophical text; it's also an extraordinary and refreshing example of how to be rigorous and exact in one's thinking while practicing charity to opposing viewpoints.
This is by far one of my favorite podcasts. The insights to be found in working through these ideas will change you. It is not an exaggeration that my personal quality of life has been improved because of this podcast.
I encourage especially people who are intimidated by philosophy to check this out. This podcast is deliberately designed for you.
Makes me better
Whenever I start thinking I have it figured out, I listen to this and realize how little I know and how much I have to learn.
I'm now a groupie
I found this podcast with the goal to get a general idea of a few topics for some legal research but ended up getting hooked and can't stop listening. I feel lucky to discover it now because there is such a large library of shows I can listen too and don't have to wait for "new" episodes because they are all "new" to me.
Great, in-depth, funny, witty, 5 stars, and two thumbs up!
Best Philosophical Conversations
For those interested in the life of the mind, you will not be disappointed. I have learned a lot listening to these guys discuss the great books of philosophy and have ventured to read books That would have been inaccessible to me without this podcast.