Philosophy Nights bring diverse people together for discussions about literature, social and cultural trends, human behaviour, technology, politics, science, and public policy in curious, open-minded company. They began in 2016 as private gatherings of McGill students from various disciplines and were expanded to welcome anyone interested in discussing and debating the issues that matter most. These evenings don't have an ideological lean and welcome evidence supporting any perspective. We seek to reflect on our assumptions and deductions while engaging with new ideas.
Philosophy Nights work as follows: after introductions, the host opens the floor to the group for any questions. Anyone can pose a question for the group to contemplate. As examples, topics we have discussed include:
- the role of religious symbols in the public sphere - the value and purpose of higher education in modern society - game theory as it relates to high-functioning psychopathy - multinational corporations extracting local resources in developing countries - integrity in journalism in a "post-truth era" - ethical arguments for and against veganism and vegetarianism - the tyranny of the majority & rights of a minority of one - the MeToo movement & gender relations - LGBTQ identities & therians - parallels between Buddhism and stoicism - increased state surveillance resulting from technological advances - the effect of hookup culture on women - if democracies are suitable for every country - the father's role in the family - ethical dilemmas posed by self-driving vehicles - effects of globalization - how to live a meaningful life, self-determination theory - deontology vs. utilitarianism - Canadian immigration policies as compared to those of other countries
After the question is posed, people jump in with arguments and anecdotes in lively debate. These evenings are filled with plenty of food and offer a great way to meet new folks in Montreal. A small promotional per-hour fee (5$ per hour with a daily maximum of 17$ + taxes) provides unlimited coffee, tea, hot drinks, snacks and, of course, intriguing philosophical discussions. Looking forward to seeing you there!