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Jonathan Miller atheism series “Brief History of Disbelief” (Merged)
Posted: 24 April 2006 02:07 AM   [ Ignore ]
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This was shown recently on the BBC:

Atheism, a Brief History of Disbelief.

I was fortunate enough to be lent a copy of the series by a member in the NY CfI branch. It is excellent. It should be shown at each CfI branch and be available for lending, especially since it is unlikely to be distributed in the US.

The series is three hours long and really quite cerebral, with a deep discussion of the history of atheism from the ancient Greece and Rome (Epicurus, Democritus, Lucretius), to the Renaissance, Britain (Hume, Bentham, etc.), France (Baron d’Holbach), the US (Paine), and much else besides. It includes interviews with Dan Dennett, Richard Dawkins, Colin McGinn, Arthur Miller, etc.

The whole is encapsulated in a touching story about Jonathan Miller’s own life and atheism, his struggles with his own Judaism, and unflinching issues about death and mortality at the end.

First rate!

[ Edited: 23 May 2007 03:08 PM by dougsmith ]
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Posted: 24 April 2006 02:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Re: Jonathan Miller atheism series

[quote author=“dougsmith”]This was shown recently on the BBC

Atheism, a Brief History of Disbelief.

I was fortunate enough to be lent a copy of the series by a member in the NY CfI branch. It is excellent. It should be shown at each CfI branch and be available for lending, especially since it is unlikely to be distributed in the US.

The series is three hours long and really quite cerebral, with a deep discussion of the history of atheism from the ancient Greece and Rome (Epicurus, Democritus, Lucretius), to the Renaissance, Britain (Hume, Bentham, etc.), France (Baron d’Holbach), the US (Paine), and much else besides. It includes interviews with Dan Dennett, Richard Dawkins, Colin McGinn, Arthur Miller, etc.”

dougsmith,
Thanks. I’d like to see it.
Bob

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Posted: 24 April 2006 03:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Hi Bob,

Unfortunately it’s not my copy so I can’t lend it out. I’m trying to find out if there’s some way to get a copy for the NY CfI library for lending or showing. We’ll see.

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Posted: 24 April 2006 04:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Additionally

The Jonalthan Miller Tapes were too short to include hours of additional interviews which are aso avaialble. If anyone wants copies for personal use, let me know via email. DJG

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"Few have the courage of their convictions. Fewer still have the courage for an attack on their convictions." - Nietzsche

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Posted: 24 April 2006 04:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Hi DJ,

Yes, I haven’t seen the interviews yet, but have the DVD.

Are you going to try to get copies for local CfI offices? I’ve emailed Austin about the same topic.

There’s also the recent Dawkins series on religion ... would love to see that too.

8)

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Posted: 24 April 2006 09:18 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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I’m working on Dawkins, I hope to have the programs converted to DVD format before the end of the week. If I manage that I’ll let you know.

I have them as windows media files now. Downloaded them as torrents from demonoid.
Jim

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Posted: 02 May 2007 02:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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"Brief History of Disbelief" on TV, Premiers May 4

This is the Jonathan Miller atheism series that I posted about quite awhile ago. Definitely deserves to be on TV. It is very cerebral, but definitely worth watching.

The website about it is HERE . This is being underwritten by CFI as well as other humanist organizations.

I am not sure if their broadcast calendar is up-to-date, but as of yet I only see listings for Muncie, IN; Tampa, FL; Roanoke, VA; Wichita, KS; Kansas City, MO.

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Posted: 02 May 2007 04:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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It’s not going to show here and I’m very disappointed for I really wanted to see it.  PBS here is not listing it and from what I can tell won’t be showing it.  I can guess why, but maybe someone can encourage them to air it.  I hope so at least.  :(

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“Sometimes in order to see the light, you have to risk the dark.” ~ Iris Hineman (Lois Smith) The Minority Report

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Posted: 07 May 2007 01:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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You may watch all three parts on veoh.com

 

 

 

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Posted: 08 May 2007 06:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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[quote author=“OhioDoc”]You may watch all three parts on veoh.com

I downloaded pts. 1 & 2 of Dawkins’ The Root of All Evil from veoh.com yesterday and this morning. I’ll check out Miller when I’m done with Dawkins.

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Posted: 08 May 2007 06:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I think that we need to engage in a letter writing campaign to ask PBS stations to run this special, and in a timely slot. We have to get our voices heard if they are hearing all of these protests against it from Christians.

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Posted: 08 May 2007 03:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Well, I talked to our local PBS people today and they said they have heard of it, but have their line up for May and June.  If they decide to air it eventually, they will email me and let me know.  It doesn’t sound like the A of G are preventing them from airing it.  They even said that it sounded like a very interesting show, but the schedule has already been made for the next two months.  I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.  I’m hoping my request helps, but if I’m the only one who says anything, then it might not help much.  :(

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Mriana
“Sometimes in order to see the light, you have to risk the dark.” ~ Iris Hineman (Lois Smith) The Minority Report

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Posted: 08 May 2007 03:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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[quote author=“Mriana”]Well, I talked to our local PBS people today and they said they have heard of it, but have their line up for May and June.  If they decide to air it eventually, they will email me and let me know.  It doesn’t sound like the A of G are preventing them from airing it.  They even said that it sounded like a very interesting show, but the schedule has already been made for the next two months.  I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.  I’m hoping my request helps, but if I’m the only one who says anything, then it might not help much.  :(

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Mriana,

PBS will definitely air it but I’m not sure when.

Bob Reasoner

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Posted: 08 May 2007 04:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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I can’t wait.

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Mriana
“Sometimes in order to see the light, you have to risk the dark.” ~ Iris Hineman (Lois Smith) The Minority Report

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Posted: 09 May 2007 05:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Thanks for pointing out this program, also thanks for the on-line source. I watched the first episode, finding Miller to be quite amiable, and the program informative. I tried watching the Root of All Evil, but was very put off by Dawkins who was embarassingly angry and confrontational: in what I saw, he was no better than his subjects.

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Posted: 12 May 2007 01:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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“Elegant and ineffectual resistance….” That is how Jonathan Miller ends the series, referring to the efforts of atheism to overcome religion. How like the end of life.

I am very glad that Doug advised of the series and that OhioDoc posted the website.

Like so much of television production, there was a lot of visual fill - Jonathan Miller ambling about in various settings, street scenes, etc - serving as background for the narrative. I was amused by the scenes where Miller watched himself on a laptop computer.

However, as a good-humored, calm review of the history of disbelief, it has much to recommend it.

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