CA Lecture series 2017/18: Jenny Bryan, ‘Knowledge and Wonder: Empedocles on understanding the world’

Date(s) - 18/10/2017
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

University of Manchester


We would like to invite you to join us for our first CA public lecture of the year on Wednesday 18th October at 5.30pm, in Room A7 of the Samuel Alexander Building on the University of Manchester campus.

Our speaker for this lecture is Jenny Bryan (Manchester), who will be speaking on ‘Knowledge and Wonder: Empedocles on understanding the world’. Dr Bryan has kindly provided the following abstract:

‘The early Greek philosopher Empedocles is unusual in lots of ways: he writes in verse when many or most philosophers seem to have adopted prose; he combines an interest in natural science with an apparent commitment to reincarnation of the soul; and they say that he died by throwing himself into Etna. Empedocles is also unusual because scholars have recently had to face the challenge of new textual material, following the rediscovery of the Strasbourg Papyrus, which has forced us to question our assumptions about the connections between the ‘philosophical’ and the ‘religious’ parts of his teachings. Central to this reassessment is the question of Empedocles’ attitude towards knowledge and the possibility that knowledge is something that gives us some sort of power over the world. I will discuss the so-called ‘Painter Fragment’ of Empedocles (DK B23) and consider its implications for understanding Empedocles’ thought about what we can know and why it matters.’

A drinks reception will follow the lecture, after which attendees may wish to join us for dinner with the speaker at a local restaurant. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *