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The Popperian Podcast

Jul 30, 2023

This episode of the Popperian Podcast features an interview that Jed Lea-Henry conducted with Nicholas Maxwell. They speak about Maxwell’s agreements and disagreements with Popper, the metaphysical assumption that there is a unity of knowledge and the preference within science for unified theories, Maxwell’s theory of Aim-Oriented Empiricism, and importantly how this ought to be extended to the social sciences and the big questions of human flourishing.

Nicholas Maxwell is an emeritus reader in philosophy of science at University College London, where he previous taught philosophy of science for nearly thirty years. He is the author of What’s Wrong With Science? (Bran's Head Books, 1976), From Knowledge to Wisdom (Blackwell, 1984), The Comprehensibility of the Universe (OUP, 1998), Is Science Neurotic? (World Scientific, 2004), Cutting God in Half – And Putting the Pieces Together Again: A New Approach to Philosophy (2010), How Universities Can Help Create a Wiser World: The Urgent Need for an Academic Revolution (Imprint Academic, 2014), Global Philosophy (2014), In Praise of Natural Philosophy: A Revolution for Thought and Life (McGill-Queen's University Press, 2017), Understanding Scientific Progress: Aim-Oriented Empiricism (Paragon House, 2017), Karl Popper, Science and Enlightenment (UCL Press, 2017), Science and Enlightenment: Two Great Problems of Learning (Springer, 2019), The Metaphysics of Science and Aim-Oriented Empiricism: A Revolution for Science and Philosophy (Synthese Library, Springer, 2019), Our Fundamental Problem: A Revolutionary Approach to Philosophy (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2020), The World Crisis - And What To Do About It (World Scientific, Spring 2021) (all available at:

*** Nicholas Maxwell’s academic profile (About Me | From Knowledge to Wisdom - UCL – University College London).

*** The Popperian Podcast #3 – Nicholas Maxwell – ‘More Popperian than Popper’ The Popperian Podcast: The Popperian Podcast #3 – Nicholas Maxwell – ‘More Popperian than Popper’ (

*** Philosophy Seminars for Five-Year Olds Nicholas Maxwell, Philosophy Seminars for Five-Year-Olds, - PhilArchive


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*** Underlying artwork by Arturo Espinosa