Peter Bowden spoke about a book he just has published in which over
20 contributors identified the ethical issues they had experienced
across 14 different disciplines. The talk will provide a sample of the more
interesting dilemmas, enough for discussing over a dozen dinner parties.
A more serious second part discusses ways in which we can use this knowledge to
build a more ethical society.
Peter is one of the convenors of Philo Agora, and is secretary to the
Australian Society of Professional and Applied Ethics. Formerly Professor
of Administration at the University of Manchester, Peter has a background in
Engineering, Administration and Economic Development.
Sex has never
constituted one of the great philosophical questions or themes. The
philosophers themselves almost never wrote about their own sex lives, as if
such discourse were taboo, as if it would endanger the capacity of their work
to be taken seriously. Kant famously feared that sexual attraction puts
in danger the categorical imperative.
And yet, sexuality and desire is probably one
of the most decisive elements of our lives. Philosophy may indeed have a
lot to do with sex. In his talk, Peter looked at some of the ways in
which sex has been alluded to in the work of Plato, Kant and Nietzsche as well
as more radical attempts to bring sex and philosophy together in the works of Georges Bataille and Friedrich Schlegel.