Daniel Dennett is one of the world’s most original and provocative thinkers. A philosopher and cognitive scientist, he is known as one of the ‘Four Horseman of New Atheism’ along with Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and the late Christopher Hitchens.
On May 22nd he came to Intelligence Squared to share the insights he has acquired over his 40-year career into the nature of how we think, decide and act. Dennett revealed his favourite thinking tools, or ‘intuition pumps’, that he and others have developed for addressing life’s most fundamental questions. As well as taking a fresh look at familiar moves — Occam’s Razor, reductio ad absurdum — he discussed new cognitive solutions designed for the most treacherous subject matter: evolution, meaning, consciousness and free will.
By acquiring these tools and learning to use them wisely, we can all aspire to better understand the world around us and our place in it.