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The University of Southampton
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What good is knowledge?


Humanities & Arts



In the 4th century BCE, Socrates raised the question, Why is knowledge better than true belief? As he pointed out, if you want to get to the Greek city of Larissa, a lucky guess will get you there just as well as knowledge. In this talk, we will consider whether knowledge is indeed valuable and in what way.


Why this is important?

Many of the decisions we make – for example, deciding to go to University, or deciding to invest billions in the construction of the Large Hadron Collider – seem to assume that knowledge is a good thing. But is that assumption correct? Is it really better to have knowledge rather than to be ignorant? This talk will explore these crucial questions.


Key descriptors:

knowledge, Socrates, ignorance, epistemology, philosophy


Suggested age range:

Years 11-13



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