Tuesday, January 22, 2019

The rediscovery of Karl Popper and his Paradox of Tolerance

It's good to see Karl Popper getting some attention.

When I discovered him while doing my Philosophy degree he was deeply unfashionable. Unfashionable both with the subject's Oxford-schooled establishment and with the left, who dismissed him as a Cold War warrior.

With the resurgence of anti-democratic forces across the West, his ideas suddenly seem more relevant.

In particular, the Paradox of Tolerance he identified - you can find the original text on this blog - has been doing the rounds on Twitter.

It has been helped by the Pictoline graphic above, which rather makes Popper appear a kindly, twinkly-eyed figure. In truth he was anything but.

When it comes to his paradox, I think Popper was simply right. It is a truth we are beginning to learn all over again.

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