• jamalrob
    Bryan Magee: 1930-2019—the champion of philosophical wonderment

    I don't think Bryan Magee can be regarded as an original philosopher in his own right, but among his books, The Philosophy of Schopenhauer was a great help to me not only in reading Schopenhauer, but in first approaching Kant.

    But of course, it's for his TV programmes that he will be remembered. I was too young to see them first time around, but I watched them all on YouTube ten years ago when I was getting interested in philosophy, and they were an excellent and exciting introduction to the thought of many of the most important philosophers. He didn't need any kind of gimmicky dumbing-down to bring the drama of philosophy alive; just a series of conversations based around a few clear questions was enough. Watching them is what got me hooked on philosophy.

    If you haven't seen them, check them out: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLBHxLhKiPKxBBSWWqzH9g71mMx9s72XoN
  • Wayfarer

    Loved Magee, esp. his book on Schop.
  • fdrake
    Sad to hear this. The show he did with Ayer on Russel and Frege was one of the things that made me want to start studying philosophy.
  • Baden
    His enthusiasm for and knowledge of the subject were contagious and he was a great interviewer. RIP.
  • T Clark

    I watched the linked interview and really enjoyed it. The way they described it, Schopenhauer's view of the world has a lot in common with mine. I guess it's the other way around. I tried to read some of his works previously and found it pretty impenetrable. The interview, on the other hand, was very clear and accessible.

    If you've read any of my writing, you've seen I'm pretty lazy - what I call a "seems to me" philosopher. I'll watch some more of the interviews and try Schopenhauer again. Thanks for the reference.
  • jamalrob
    I was actually attempting to link to the YouTube playlist, not that interview in particular, which isn't the most interesting of them, in my opinion. I remember most enjoying the interviews with Ayer, Searle, Bernard Williams, Hubert Dreyfus, Marcuse, Martha Nussbaum, Hilary Putnam, and Anthony Quinton. But yes, Magee's ability to summarize and clarify was brilliant.
  • Amity

    Afraid to say I never listened to him before. But now I have. Thanks :sparkle:

    Bryan Magee and Peter Singer on 'Hegel and Marx'. 43 mins.

  • David Rose
    Very sad to hear this. Magee was very important to me, firstly by introducing me to the work of Karl Popper in a Sunday Times magazine article relating to his Fontana Modern Masters book on Popper (1973) - I think it was Magee who wrote the S.T. article, but possibly not. And around the same time, though I was unaware of them, a series of BBC radio interviews over the winter of 1970-71, later published in book form by Secker & Warburg in 1971, republished in pb. by OUP in 1986, as "Modern British Philosophy" - the version I have. I was always slightly puzzled, and disappointed, when he stood for Parliament - it seemed a diminishment, a waste of his talents somehow. Maybe the ability to sum up a philosophical position with clarity is as important as making original contributions. He will be missed.
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