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Department of History and Philosophy of Science


A selection of podcasts featuring members of the Department.


Nick Hopwood, 'History is Always Happening Now', Made the Same Way

17 February 2023

Nick Hopwood appears on a podcast with trip-hop poet Princess Ari. He discusses his speciality in the medical history, and how our understanding of history changes as much as our understanding of science. Hopwood and Princess Ari use this to explore how medical history relates to colonialism, the patriarchy, and modern mental health issues.

Listen to Made the Same Way


Nick Hopwood, '100 Years of "Daedalus" – The Birth of Assisted Reproductive Technology', PET Podcast

1 February 2023

Nick Hopwood appears on a panel for the Progress Educational Trust. The debate focuses on the past and future of in vitro fertilisation, a century after J.B.S Haldane's 'Daedalus' lecture at Cambridge popularised the concept.

Listen to PET Podcast


Anna Alexandrova, 'What Can Science Tell Us About Happiness?', On Humans

10 December 2022

Anna Alexandrova discusses the concept of happiness with philosophy graduate Ilari Mäkelä. The discussion includes whether we can scientifically measure happiness, what metrics we should use, and why some countries are happier than others.

Listen to On Humans


Joshua Nall, 'The Blazing World with Michael Bravo', On the Road with Penguin Classics

9 February 2022

Joshua Nall, Director of the Whipple Museum, is an interviewee in an exploration of Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle. The episode concerns The Blazing World, a groundbreaking work of fantasy, philosophy, and feminism. Nall discusses its use of then-new science, such as the invention of the telescope, using objects from the Whipple Museum.

Listen to On the Road with Penguin Classics


Mary Brazelton, 'RoundTable: Technology and Innovation', Health Futures Forum

25 August 2021

Mary Brazelton joins a table of experts to discuss the future of technology in healthcare with the World Health Organization. Discussions from Brazelton and others include advances in genomics, artificial intelligence, and robotics.

Listen to Health Futures Forum


Joshua Nall, 'What Did the Future Look Like in the Past?', Mind Over Chatter

26 March 2021

Joshua Nall appears in Cambridge University's own podcast, Mind Over Chatter, as part of a panel on how people in the past viewed the future. Nall discusses how technology in the 19th century changed people's perception of modernity and utopias.

Listen to Mind over Chatter


Mary Brazelton, 'Alexandre Yersin and the Race to Fight the Plague', The Forum

7 January 2021

Mary Brazelton appears on the BBC World Service programme The Forum, as part of a panel on the bacteriologist Alexandre Yersin. The discussion focuses on Yersin's discovery of the bubonic plague bacillus, how it was discovered, and what happened to him after.

Listen to The Forum


Jacob Stegenga, 'Medical Nihilism: A Conversation with Jacob Stegenga', Athenaeum Review

30 April 2020

Jacob Stegenga discusses his argument that medicine is too readily prescribed. Topics include different types of bias, the difference between simple and complex causes of disease, and how this research ties into other fields of study such as sexual desire.

Listen to Athenaeum Review


Jacob Stegenga, 'Jacob Stegenga on Medical Nihilism', EconTalk

1 April 2019

Jacob Stegenga, author of Medical Nihilism, discusses his book's findings with the Liberty Fund. Topics include the FDA prioritising approval over safety, and the resulting influx of medication whose benefits are limited. Through this, Stegenga discusses how the FDA can be reformed.

Listen to EconTalk


Hasok Chang, 'Hasok Chang on Epistemic Iteration', The HPS Podcast

13 December 2013

Hasok Chang appears on the University of Melbourne's podcast to discuss the scientific method. He challenges the common assumption that scientific inquiries start at a place of knowledge about their hypothesis. Instead, he proposes that many great scientific discoveries come from a lack of knowledge, and a desire to investigate and test unlikely hypotheses.

Listen to The HPS Podcast