Ideas Matter: Walden Two and radical behaviourism

On 20 June 2020, Battle of Ideas Charity hosted The Academy Online, a series of talks and book discussions exploring the theme Psychology and Democracy.

This podcast features the introductory talk to a discussion on the 1948 novel ‘Walden Two’ by BF Skinner, an American psychologist, author, inventor and social philosopher. Skinner liked to describe his own philosophy as ‘radical behaviorism’ and the novel has gained renewed attention alongside interest in social psychology and behavioural science at a time of a pandemic, when many are keen to understand the factors that shape our decisions and the extent to which we can say we are we conscious agents who determine our own actions.

The lecturer is Dr Helene Guldberg, a lecturer in psychology at the Open University and author of two books; ‘Reclaiming Childhood: freedom and play in an age of fear’ and ‘Just Another Ape?’.

The Academy Online was a mixture of lectures and seminars offering an opportunity to place contemporary events in a historical and philosophical context. The full programme and some background reading can be found at…logy-and-democracy