Great in-depth YT-channel for philosophy work explanations

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Re: Great in-depth YT-channel for philosophy work explanatio

Post by aiddon »

Perhaps my post belong in an epistomology forum, but seeing as the topic sprouted here, here goes: this is a rather interesting and timely discussion because in one way it is about the current state of our intellectual capacity in this, the "Information Age". Never before has so much information been available and so easily accessible. That information isn't always reliable, but the vast majority of it is - but with varying degrees of depth. I agree with Voice that there are instances when all we need and wish for is a kind of synopsis of content, a summary of works that we do not have the inclination or time to immerse ourselves. It is simply a symptom of the information-hungry society that we exists now - and it is great in one sense that there is such an appetite to know stuff. But my question is, with our increased breadth of knowledge, has our depth of knowledge been comprimised? And which is more preferrable? Breadth or depth?

Obviously, to obtain an expertise in something, say medicine or history, then the first hand source is essential - otherwise what you have is ephemeral, superficial knowledge. It is this that currently dominates, and because information is so available, it is fleeting and becomes somewhat cheapened - the probability is you won't know the same stuff in a few months', weeks', or even days' time. Is this desirable? Have we lost something that the intellectuals of old possessed - real, in-depth knowledge? I am somewhat envious that I cannot truly profess to having a particular expertise in one area. Okay, maybe the literature of John Steinbeck or the music of the Fleet Foxes or something like that - but has the definition of real knowledge changed because of the internet? Books have been demoted as the primary vehicle of knowledge, as I must admit to being uneasy about this.

But, I am somewhat kindred with Voice in that I seek out as many things that I find interesting and I wish to learn about them, but in lesser detail - just so that I have some knowledge of it. I like to know as much as I can about a great many things. It is very difficult in the subject of philosophy to be authentically expert in many fields - it is too wide and too esoteric for the amateur philosopher, which I proclaim to be. The blame also must lie with the writers themselves, who invariably, are not the most accessible, even talented writers. Wittgenstein confounded with his meanderings, Kant's work is like an impenetrable brick wall. Camus and the more literary philosophers are obvious exceptions - but then their work cannot be truly considered academic in its nature. I find the summaries of writers such as Simon Blackburn, Bryan Magee and William Barrett immensely entertaining, but again, these are merely writers summarising the great works. So it is up to the likes of YouTube, Philosphy Now , and the "pop philosophers" like Alain de Botton to communicate philosophy to the mere mortals. And when time and inclination is lacking, this is all the curious mind may require.
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