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The University of Southampton
PhilosophyPart of Humanities

Philosophy Cafe. New ways of looking at mathematics

Published: 14 February 2013
John Hansard Gallery

Ray Monk, Professor of Philosophy, has spoken about mathematical truth at the University of Southampton’s popular Philosophy Cafe at the John Hansard Gallery on campus.

From the time of Plato onwards, philosophers have regarded mathematical truth as an ideal. Unlike ordinary, empirical truth, it is held, mathematical truth is eternal, incorrigible and certain. This talk looked at the ways in which philosophers have tried to account for the special nature of mathematical truth, concentrating on Bertrand Russell who ended up denying there was such a thing.

Ray, the author of biographies of Wittgenstein and Russell, wrote a well-received book about atomic scientist J Robert Oppenheimer in 2012.

You can listen to an audio recording of Ray's talk on the right of this page.

Philosophy Cafe talks are scheduled each month and cover a wide range of topics, for more information visit the Lifelong Learning website

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