Cambridge Festival of Ideas - Hearts of Darkness: The Extremes of Immorality

27 October 2018, 17:00 - 18:00
Cambridge campus

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Human beings are immensely creative animals. But that creativity can be put to different ends, both good and evil. How should we understand the extremes of immorality? What drives such people to cause suffering in others, deliberately and with a cool, clear eye? What are their motives, what kind of character must they have?

We will discuss various ideas from the history of thought:

  • Augustine’s understanding of evil as a corruption of the good
  • Kant’s understanding of evil as a deliberate rejection of morality in favour sensuous pleasure
  • Hume’s picture of a ‘malicious monster’ with their ideals turned inside-out
  • Arendt’s understanding of evil as the work of thoroughly unglamorous, dull, banal and unthinking individuals, and even
  • Nietzsche’s hint that what we often call ‘evil’ might actually be, in some sense, from another perspective good. 

With Michael Wilby, Anglia Ruskin University.

This event is part of 

Cambridge Festival of Ideas.

Event Details

27 October 2018, 17:00 - 18:00
Cambridge campus
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