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20 September 2016

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A History of the Infinite

Professor Adrian Moore – A History of the Infinite on BBC Radio 4.

St Hugh’s College Fellow and University of Oxford Lecturer in Philosophy, Professor Adrian Moore is currently appearing in a series for BBC Radio 4. ‘A History of the Infinite’ is being broadcast each weekday, starting yesterday (Monday 19th September) and concluding on Friday 30th September from 13:45.

The first four programmes will be concerned with the remarkable turnaround between the time of the early Greeks, when various puzzles and paradoxes associated with the infinite had made it an object of abhorrence and distrust, to the early modern period, by which time it had come to be associated with the divine and had become an object of veneration and awe.

In the next three programmes listeners will be introduced to some of the extraordinary mathematical results concerning the infinite, including the discovery that some infinities are bigger than others.

In the final three programmes attention will shift to the cosmos and our place in it.  Adrian will consider questions about the age and size of the universe, about death and immortality, and about our basic urge to seek meaning for our lives in something infinitely greater than us.

In the first episode, broadcast yesterday, Professor Moore began his journey through philosophical thought on infinity and explored why the notion made the Ancient Greeks so uncomfortable. You can listen to the first episode here through BBC iPlayer.

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