Alex Tester and Lawrence Tao are musicians with an interest in science and psychology, on a quest to discover why we have the deep emotional ties with the music we hear. Join them for a thought-provoking hour where we question the nature of music, wonder whether we can ever expect the same response from our listening, and explore whether it matters that we can’t decide what consists a musical masterpiece.
Alex and Lawrence work as Director of Music and Head of Academic Music at St Edward’s Oxford. They are performing musicians with an interest in how the subject connects with other academic
spheres, and both also teach Theory of Knowledge for the IB Diploma.
Science is giving us unprecedented insight into the big questions that have challenged humanity. Where did we come from? What is the ultimate destiny of the universe? What are the building blocks of the physical world? What is consciousness?
‘What We Cannot Know’ asks us to rein in this unbridled enthusiasm for the power of science. Are there limits to what we can discover about our physical universe? Are some regions of the future beyond the predictive powers of science and mathematics? Are there ideas so complex that they are beyond the conception of our finite human brains? Can brains even investigate themselves or does the analysis enter an infinite loop from which it is impossible to rescue itself?
Marcus du Sautoy is the Simonyi Professor for the Public Understanding of Science and Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford. He is author of five books including his most recent books What We Cannot Know (Fourth Estate 2016) and How to Count to Infinity (Quercus 2017). He has presented numerous radio and TV series including a four part landmark TV series for the BBC called The Story of Maths. He received an OBE for services to science in the 2010 New Year’s Honours List and was made a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2016.