HoP 382 - No Lord but God - the Peasants’ War and Radical Reformation

October 24th, 2021

Faced with massive political upheaval and the rise of the Anabaptists, Luther argues for a socially conservative version of the Reformation.

HoP 381 - More Lutheran than Luther - Philip Melanchthon

October 10th, 2021

Luther’s close ally Melanchthon uses his knowledge of ancient philosophy and rhetoric in the service of the Reformation.

HoP 380 - Take Your Choice - Erasmus vs Luther on Free Will

September 26th, 2021

Erasmus clashes with Martin Luther over the question whether our wills are free or enslaved to sin.

HoP 378 - Faith, No More - Martin Luther

August 1st, 2021

How Luther’s doctrine of justification by faith alone and his attack on the Church relate to the history of philosophy.

HoP 377 - One Way or Another - Northern Scholasticism

July 18th, 2021

Trends in Aristotelian philosophy in northern and eastern Europe in the fifteenth century, featuring discussion of the “Wegestreit” and the nominalist theology of Gabriel Biel.

HoP 374 - Opposites Attract - Nicholas of Cusa

June 6th, 2021

The radical negative theology of Nicholas of Cusa, and his hope of establishing peace between the religions of the world.

HoP 371 - European Disunion - Introduction to the Reformation

April 25th, 2021

How humanism and scholasticism came together with the Protestant Reformation to create the philosophy of 15-16th century Europe.

HoP 366 - The Men Who Saw Tomorrow - Renaissance Magic and Astrology

February 14th, 2021

Ficino, Pico, Cardano, and other Renaissance thinkers debate whether astrology and magic are legitimate sciences with a foundation in natural philosophy.

HoP 352 - The Teacher of Our Actions - Renaissance Historiography

June 28th, 2020

Bruni, Poggio, Machiavelli, and Guicciardini explore political ideas and historical method in works on Roman and Italian history.

HoP 350 - The Sentence - Machiavelli on Republicanism

May 31st, 2020

Peter celebrates reaching 350 episodes by explaining a single sentence in Machiavelli's "Discourses."

HoP 348 - The Sweet Restraints of Liberty - Republicanism and Civic Humanism

May 3rd, 2020

Did “civic humanism” really make republicanism a newly dominant political theory in the Italian Renaissance?

HoP 345 - What a Piece of Work is Man - Manetti and Pico on Human Nature

March 22nd, 2020

Pico della Mirandola and Giannozzo Manetti praise humans as the centerpiece of the created world. But what about the other animals?

HoP 334 - Chance Encounters - Reviving Hellenistic philosophy

October 20th, 2019

The rediscovery of Epicurus, Lucretius, and Sextus Empiricus spreads challenging ideas about chance, atomism, and skepticism.

HoP 331 - Literary Criticism - Lorenzo Valla

September 8th, 2019

Lorenzo Valla launches a furious attack on scholastic philosophy, favoring the resources of classical Latin.

HoP 329 - Greeks Bearing Gifts - Byzantine Scholars in Italy

July 14th, 2019

Bessarion and George Trapenzuntius, rival scholars from the Greek east who helped inspire the Italian Renaissance.

HoP 325 - Platonic Love - Gemistos Plethon

May 19th, 2019

Was Gemistos Plethon, the last great thinker of the Byzantine tradition, a secret pagan or just a Christian with an unusual enthusiasm for Platonism?

HoP 292 - Say it With Poetry - Chaucer and Langland

December 31st, 2017

Philosophical themes in Chaucer’s “Canterbury Tales” and “Troilus and Criseyde,” as well as Langland’s “Piers Plowman.”

HoP 287 - Down to the Ground - Meister Eckhart

October 22nd, 2017

The scholastic and mystic Meister Eckhart sets out his daring speculations about God and humankind in both Latin and German.

HoP 282 - Portrait of the Artist - John Buridan

July 16th, 2017

The hipster’s choice for favorite scholastic, John Buridan, sets out a nominalist theory of knowledge and language, and explains the workings of free will.

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