055: Ep 51 – What Philosophers Owe Society

Philosophy Bakes Bread radio show and podcast

In this fifty-first episode of the Philosophy Bakes Bread radio show and podcast, we interview UCLA philosophy graduate student and co-founder of the Vim BlogZach Biondi, about “What Philosophers Owe Society,” the subject of a set of essays that he wrote for the Vim.

Zach Biondi.

Zach caught our attention with three essays that he wrote for the Vim Blog, which were released in part in the effort to define what the Vim Blog is all about. According to the site, “The Vim Blog is a collection of philosophers who write and podcast about issues in politics. It is a rethinking of the think piece. The goal is not to write the news but instead to discuss broader trends and the philosophical ideas that are pertinent in the current political climate. The Vim is not embedded in the news cycle. Each article is written to be relevant for a longer term.” Zach’s three essays begin with “What Philosophy Owes Society” here. See also parts II and III

Listen for our “You Tell Me!” questions and for some jokes in one of our concluding segments, called “Philosophunnies.” Reach out to us on Facebook @PhilosophyBakesBread and on Twitter @PhilosophyBB; email us at philosophybakesbread@gmail.com; or call and record a voicemail that we play on the show, at 859.257.1849. Philosophy Bakes Bread is a production of the Society of Philosophers in America (SOPHIA). Check us out online at PhilosophyBakesBread.com and check out SOPHIA at PhilosophersInAmerica.com.



(1 hr 6 mins)

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  1. The Vim Blog.
  2. Zach’s first Vim essay, “What Philosophy Owes Society, Part I.”
  3. Zach’s second Vim essay, “Anti-Intellectualism.”
  4. Zach’s third Vim essay, “A New Public Philosophy.”
  5. Michael Sandel, Justice (New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2010).
  6. Michael Sandel, What Money Can’t Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets (New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2013).


You Tell Me!

For our future “You Tell Me!” segments, Zach posed the following questions in this episode:

“Do you adopt the Socratic attitude — the openness to question any of our beliefs — which Socrates thought was necessary for a life worth living? And, what kinds of political consequences would adopting that attitude have?”

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