show episodes
 
The Partially Examined Life is 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, we pick a short text and chat about it with some balance between insight and flippancy. You don't have to know any philosophy, or even to have read the text we're talking about to (mostly) follow and (hopefully) enjoy the discussion. For links to the texts we discuss and other info, check out www.partiallyexaminedlife.com. We also featu ...
 
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show series
 
Emma-Jean is a trumpeter, singer, multi-instrumentalist, techie… She even runs her own record label. She’s had five releases since 2016. We discuss “Say Something” (and listen at the end to “Spectre” from Yellow (2021), “Open – Remix feat. Blu” (a 2020 single), and “Um” from Um Yang (2020). Intro: “Baro Bop” from Walrus (2016). For more see emmajea…
 
Mark is joined by novelist Sarahlyn Bruck and playwright Kayla Dryesse to discuss the conventions, evolution, and influence of daytime soaps. Are they actually terrible, or is critical dismissal of them largely sexist? Are prestige TV shows like Downton Abbey and White Orchid really just soaps in disguise? For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bo…
 
We re-introduce an episode from ten years ago that's long been behind our paywall on G.F.W. Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit, Ch. 4A, "Self-Consciousness," which features guest Tom McDonald. We've removed the "review" section of the old episode (the first half), because it's duplicative of our recent three-episode run on this book. The discussion th…
 
Melvin has played bass on over 200 albums since 1980 in the worlds of jazz, rock, and hip-hop, and has numerous songwriting credits, playing with Defunkt, Arto Lindsay, Henry Rollins, Bernie Worrell, Vernon Reid, etc. We discuss his solo tune featuring Kokayi "Get Some" from 4+1 Equals 5 for May 25 (2021), the title track from The Terror End Of Bea…
 
Melville’s “Bartleby the Scrivener” is subtitled a “Story of Wall St.,” yet there is almost nothing in it of the bustle of city life, and entirely nothing in it of the hustle of the trading floor. The story’s walls block out the streets, serving on the one hand as a container for a colorful assortment of human Xerox machines, on the other as a blan…
 
With the recent theatrical release of The Green Knight, Mark and Brian along with Den of Geek's David Crow and the very British Al Baker consider the range of cinematic Arthuriana, including Excalibur (1981), Camelot (1967), King Arthur (2004), King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017), First Knight (1995), Sword of the Valiant (1983), Sir Gawain and…
 
Continuing on The Phenomenology of Spirit, ch. 3, "Force and the Understanding." We start off by considering the players in force: the thing exerting the force and the thing receiving. By arguing that these are not so different, Hegel moves to arguing that knowledge and the world are likewise not sharply distinguished. If you're not hearing the ful…
 
Melvin has played bass on over 200 albums since 1980 in the worlds of jazz, rock, and hip-hop, and has numerous songwriting credits, doing stints with Defunkt, Arto Lindsay, Rollins Band, SociaLybrium (with Bernie Worrell), The Zig Zag Power Trio (with Vernon Reid), etc. We discuss his solo tune featuring Kokayi “Get Some” from 4+1 Equals 5 for May…
 
Why is lying wrong? Scene conceptions clash. It is hard to lie in a pretend scene, because the pretending is already a lie. You can lie inside-out or outside-in. The relevant PEL episode to find out about Kant on lying is #10. Image cribbed from this article. Just look at that goddamned liar in the middle of the picture His deceit is captured perfe…
 
With the recent theatrical release of The Green Knight, Mark and Brian along with Den of Geek's David Crow and the very British Al Baker consider the range of cinematic Arthuriana, including Excalibur (1981), Camelot (1967), King Arthur (2004), King Arthur: Legend of the Sword (2017), First Knight (1995), Sword of the Valiant (1983), Sir Gawain and…
 
On The Phenomenology of Spirit, ch. 3, "Force and the Understanding." What is "force" as physics describes it? And scientific law? Do these terms denote objects in the world, or models for how we describe the world? Part two of this episode is only going to be available to you if you sign up at partiallyexaminedlife.com/support or via Apple Podcast…
 
A little political ranting precedes a consideration of what we might read in aesthetics, philosophy of science, and philosophy of sport. What do we remember about emotions? Finally, Seth's morbid interests and Devo. If you enjoy this kind of free-form discussion, you can get it on the reg by becoming a PEL Citizen via one of the methods identified …
 
Mark and Bill do impressions of people you don’t know. The is-ought distinction is bravely explored. Does pretending to be cavemen help? Magic business is afoot. Childhood speaks. We’ve now passed the point where the post-game discussion is just included with the episode here. If you want to hear our reflections on the episodes going forward and ou…
 
"Queering" doesn't just mean adding LGBTQ+ representation to games; it's disruption of norms through added player freedom. Mark and guest co-host Tyler engage game designer Naomi Clark on sandbox games, character creation, how games train us, glitches, speed runs, and more, touching on The Sims, The Last of Us, Cyberbpunk, Mass Effect, and her own …
 
Focusing on The Phenomenology of Spirit (1807), ch. 2 "Perception." Hegel's critique of the adequacy of perceptual knowledge has metaphysical aspects: The relation of substance to properties, properties to each other, and things to other things and to the perceiver all create difficulties that call for more active participation by the mind. If you'…
 
Chris started in the Scottish electronic band Finitribe in the early ’80s and then moved to Chicago in 1988, doing stints in Revolting Cocks, Ministry, Pigface, et al, before embarking on a 23-album solo career. We discuss “A Phantom Marriage” from The Birthday Poems (2021) feat. Monica Queen, the title track from Bloodhounds (2018), “De Testimony”…
 
Does it make sense to try to have everyone get what they “deserve”? We act out the desert machine but yet get no predictable cake. Judgebot 5000 enters our lives. Is this our first really good episode? Maybe. To hear more about meritocracy, try the Partially Examined Life’s recent interview with the great Michael Sandel. Audio editing by Tyler Hisl…
 
On The Phenomenology of Spirit (1807), ch. 1 "Sense Certainty" and ch. 2 "Perception." We walk through the first step in considering Hegel's dialectical analysis of theories of knowledge. Sense-certainty claims that we have direct access to sensory particulars which can act as foundational. But can we really refer or point to a particular thing wit…
 
Does it make sense to try to have everyone get what they "deserve"? Your hosts Mark Linsenmayer and Bill Arnett (Chicago Improv Studio) act out the desert machine but yet get no predictable cake. Hear more PvI at philosophyimprov.com. Support the podcast to get bonus stuff and good karma!
 
We try to be boring. Bill tries to make a discovery amidst the canards. Mark tries to be a good meta-dupe. But is our success in these attempts guaranteed by the deal you have already made with us by listening to this? It is not. With our first celebrity guest, the final judge is unveiled! In the post-game, we talk Conan O’Brien (sound effects) and…
 
Steve has written over 1000 songs across 17 Church albums starting in 1980, 13 solo albums and numerous collaborations. His style is theatrical and psychedelic, and his lyrics aim for “maximum ambiguity.” We discuss “Love Song Yet to Be Named” by Steve Kilbey and The Winged Heels from The Hall of Counterfeits (2021) and some tunes by The Church: “A…
 
Two micro scenes and a mystery number of interruptions reveal our underlying definitions. How will we overcome the lag between our words and become like-minded? How many beats in an heirloom beet if an heirloom hair-looms beets? Many lessons are learned that are not THE lesson, necessitating some difficult multi-tasking. In the post-game, Bill star…
 
After 101 episodes and a bit over two years, Mark, Erica, and Brian reflect on what we've learned and set a course for the future. What have we determined about how and why we consume? What's the relation between consumption and creativity? For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop. Sponsor:…
 
On G.W.F. Hegel's 1807 opus: A series of treatments of various theories in epistemology (among other things), seeing how they're internally incoherent, which then moves us to more sophisticated theories. Part two of this episode is only going to be available to you if you sign up at partiallyexaminedlife.com/support or via Apple Podcasts. Get it no…
 
Is death something to be feared? What’s next? What are the DETAILS? Do not adjust your listening device or call an ambulance. That sound you hear is not ground hum nor tinnitus but is the sound of improvisation. Warning: We talk about suicide a bit. If you’re feeling depressed, don’t call the lava demon hotline, as it is a scam. We make a few refer…
 
Mark, Erica, and Brian delve into this 8-film horror franchise started by James Wan in 2013 through The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It. Do their demons scare us, and do their Catholic defenses provide a convincing antidote? Is it OK to valorize the Warrens, the supernatural detectives who were most likely hucksters in real life? For more, visit…
 
Concluding on Schelling’s System of Transcendental Idealism (1800), Parts 1 and 2. What sort of self is created in the act of self-consciousness that according to Schelling grounds all knowledge? We further consider this primordial act. To hear the full second part, you'll need to go sign up at partiallyexaminedlife.com/support.…
 
Glen led smooth alt rock legends Toad the Wet Sprocket from ’88 to ’97 through six albums, has released 7 often folky solo albums (and 3 more Toad albums since their reunion) since then plus various side projects. We discuss “Old Habits Die Hard” by Toad (a 2020 single), “Leaving Oldtown” from his latest solo release, Swallowed by the New (2016), a…
 
What is Philosophy vs. Improv? Hear about the new podcast by Mark Linsenmayer (The Partially Examined Life Philosophy Podcast) and Bill Arnett (Chicago Improv Studio, The Complete Improviser author). Go listen to the show at philosophyimprov.com or subscribe via Apple, Audible, Stitcher, Spotify, or however you get your podcasts. Get more episodes …
 
Director/writer/sound operator Heather Fink joins Mark, Erica, and Brian to discuss the role of the director in making a good comedy, covering TV vs. film, sex scenes, not telling actors how to read their lines, editing, and more. For more, visit prettymuchpop.com. Hear bonus content for this episode at patreon.com/prettymuchpop. Sponsor: Get a loa…
 
Bill starts us with a scene: Behold the Doctor’s Office, where anything can happen, and often DOES. Is this whole thing a bad idea? Do you think you’re BETTER than this idea? Do you? If you need to tell yourself that, that’s OK. In the post-game, we talk a little about Stoicism (listen to PEL about it, ego issues, and ephemeral art. Our recommendat…
 
On Friedrich Wilhelm Joseph Schelling’s System of Transcendental Idealism (1800), Parts 1 and 2. What is self-consciousness, and how did Schelling think that it grounds all of knowledge? Part two of this episode is only going to be available to you if you sign up at partiallyexaminedlife.com/support. Get it now or listen to a preview. Sponsors: Vis…
 
Mark starts us off this time: What is reality? Bill pushes back, which is rather his point this round. Hilarity ensues, given that the world is just a construct of our minds and we want it to do so. Hilarity doesn’t really do much else besides ensuing, does it? Lazy bastard. Learn more about Kant’s phenomena vs. noumena in this very old episode Par…
 
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