Is the world really better than ever?

The long read: The headlines have never been worse. But an increasingly influential group of thinkers insists that humankind has never had it so good and only our pessimism is holding us back By the end of last year, anyone who had been paying even passing attention to the news headlines was highly likely to […]

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‘A reckoning for our species’: the philosopher prophet of the Anthropocene

The long read: Timothy Morton wants humanity to give up some of its core beliefs, from the fantasy that we can control the planet to the notion that we are above other beings. His ideas might sound weird, but theyre catching on A few years ago, Bjrk began corresponding with a philosopher whose books she […]

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Accelerationism: how a fringe philosophy predicted the future we live in

The long read: The world is changing at dizzying speed but for some thinkers, not quickly enough. Is accelerationism a dangerous idea or does it speak to our troubled times? Half a century ago, in the great hippie year of 1967, an acclaimed young American science fiction writer, Roger Zelazny, published his third novel. In […]

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Alien intelligence: the extraordinary minds of octopuses and other cephalopods

After a startling encounter with a cuttlefish, Australian philosopher Peter Godfrey-Smith set out to explore the mysterious lives of cephalopods. He was left asking: why do such smart creatures live such a short time? Inches above the seafloor of Sydneys Cabbage Tree Bay, with the proximity made possible by several millimetres of neoprene and a […]

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