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A History of The Infinite

Adrian Moore’s radio series is entitled ‘A History of The Infinite’. It will be broadcast each weekday between Monday 19th September and Friday 30th September, from 1.45 p.m. to 2 p.m., on Radio 4, and it will tell the story of evolving conceptions of the infinite over the past two and a half thousand years. All aspects of the topic will be covered: the philosophical, the mathematical, the scientific, and the theological. Each programme will include interviews with experts in the field.

The first four programmes will be concerned with the remarkable turnaround between the time of the early Greeks, when various puzzles and paradoxes associated with the infinite had made it an object of abhorrence and distrust, to the early modern period, by which time it had come to be associated with the divine and had become an object of veneration and awe. In the next three programmes listeners will be introduced to some of the extraordinary mathematical results concerning the infinite, including the discovery that some infinities are bigger than others. In the final three programmes attention will shift to the cosmos and our place in it. Adrian will consider questions about the age and size of the universe, about death and immortality, and about our basic urge to seek meaning for our lives in something infinitely greater than us.

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