Thursday, 19 September 2013

Russell-Copleston Debate Linked and Mapped

I've found this link to a public domain audio file of the famous debate between atheist philosopher Bertrand Russell and Catholic priest F.C. Copleston (who, as far as I know, is unique in the history of philosophy for having a name that sounds almost exactly like a non-league football team).

Like other links I've found, the portion of the debate we hear covers a discussion on the cosmological argument, focusing on contingency and necessity. From Copleston's comment at the end of the clip, it seems that they then went on to talk about religious experience. I'd be interested to know if a link of the full debate exists anywhere?

Below, I've also shared a mind map I drew of the some of the key points in the debate.

Asking students who they think "won" the radio debate is always an interesting exercise. I'd say that overall, my students have tended to think that Copleston shades it. Any views or comments on this point are welcome!

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