Wasow Scholar Special Event: The Philosophy of Smell With Asifa Majid

Wednesday, March 8, 2023
Levinthal Hall at the Stanford Humanities Center, 424 Santa Teresa Street
Photo of Asifa Majid

Photo of Asifa Majid

You are invited to a taping of the nationally syndicated radio program and podcast Philosophy Talk. On Wednesday March 8 at 7pm at the Stanford Humanities Center, hosts Josh Landy and Ray Briggs will be joined by special guest, Oxford experimental psychologist, olfaction expert, and Wasow Visiting Scholar in Symbolic Systems Asifa Majid, to record an episode on “The Philosophy of Smell.”

When philosophers think about human perception, they tend to focus on vision and turn their noses up at olfaction. So what insights can we gain about perception, thought, and language by focusing on olfaction? How culturally variable is the ability to distinguish one scent from another? Do we need to learn certain concepts before we can detect certain odors, or can our noses pick up things we can’t yet name? And why do we have so many words to describe what we see, yet so few to describe what we smell?

In addition to thought provoking conversation and audience questions, the show will feature Roving Philosophical Reporter Holly J. McDede, satirist and Sixty-Second Philosopher Ian Shoales, and a slew of smell sensations!

This event is generously sponsored by the Stanford Symbolic Systems Program.