The Importance of Not Being Earnest
Robert Newman, Kieran Setiya (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Zoe Walker (Cambridge University)

May 10, 2021, 2:00pm - 3:30pm

This event is online


  • Royal Institute of Philosophy
  • Centre for Philosophy and Visual Arts, KCL


London School of Economics

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Free, online, and all welcome


We explore what’s philosophically interesting about comedy. Both have a lot in common: showing up the ordinary as odd, critiquing the status quo, hecklers… But can humour be a source of knowledge? What does it tell us about how we interact with one another? What role does it play in our social and political life? And will we ruin the joke by explaining it?!



  • Robert Newman, Comedian and author
  • Kieran Setiya, Professor of Philosophy, MIT
  • Zoe Walker, Lecturer in Philosophy, Magdalene College, Cambridge



  • Sarah Fine, Fellow, Forum for Philosophy, LSE & Senior Lecturer in Philosophy, KCL


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May 10, 2021, 2:00pm BST

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