2016 Philosophy Symposium – “Vulnerable Humanity, Predictable Machines” (Part 1)

humanity_machines_michelangelo_1Co-directed by Merlin CCC (in conjunction with Dr. Barry Ferst, Professor of Philosophy at Carroll College, and Tim Holmes, internationally-renowned artist) and hosted by Carroll College,  “Vulnerable Humanity, Predictable Machines” was the first of three community events geared to initiate a public discussion about the human-technology relationship and the promises and perils of artificial intelligence (AI).  The free symposium took place in the Sage Room of the Corette Library at Carroll College on Thursday, Nov. 17th 2016.

Listen to the audio recording of the symposium by clicking the play button on the video below.

Symposium Theme

Rather than considering the human-technology relationship in terms of material reductionism and reasoning, our symposium looked at some of the less emphasized properties of the human spirit — namely, our propensity to be vulnerable, unpredictable, arbitrary, and at times, unreasonable.  The suggestion was that it was these things (not our ability to reason) that make material reductionism nonsensical and, thus save humanity from a life of artificial robotic realities.  View & download the complete symposium theme here!

Our Panel

Our Q & A-style symposium featured a distinguished panel of invited guest speakers from a variety of disciplines, including: Edward Gray, M.S., LCPC (Depth Psychotherapist), Dr. Edward Glowienka, Ph.D. (Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Carroll College), Dr. Kelly Cline, Ph.D. (Astrophysicist & Associate Professor of Mathematics, Carroll College), and Pastor Russ Danaher (Pastor & ADA Coordinator, Montana Department of Corrections).

The amount of interest, participation, and dialogue generated at our 2016 Philosophy Symposium was inspiring. Thank you to our guest panelists, community members (80+ individuals!!!), Carroll College and the Depth Psychology Alliance!  Thank you also to Ryan Hazen for recording our event & facilitating livestream access & to Kelsey Bogumill for photographing our event (see photos below).  We look forward to our next Philosophy Symposium on the human-technology relationship scheduled for the Spring of 2017!