Plato suggests that how we process and articulate our ideas is inseparable from what we end up thinking and doing, that philosophical excellence is as much a matter of dialectical engagement as it is about arriving at a substantive vision. It is hardly surprising that he mistrusted writing as much as he did, seeing it as more likely to dull the mind than invigorate it. The written word is a medium that is peculiarly susceptible to enabling shallow cleverness rather than nourishing genuinely intelligent thought.
— Johnny Lyons, The Philosophy of Isaiah Berlin
I read around a hundred books a year, yet I increasingly agree with old Plato here. I appreciate the way that podcasting can be a medium for in-depth, invigorating conversation, yet I only listen to podcasts occasionally. To some extent, that’s because if I feel like listening to something, I’d rather it be music. I can’t listen to a podcast while working, because concentrating on a conversation uses the same part of the brain I need to concentrate on my work. Ultimately, though, it’s probably just habit. I know my way around the world of books. Who has time to explore the million-and-one podcast options out there?