Found a long-lost favorite

A transcript of Severn Darden’s “Metaphysics Lecture”, which I heard many times on WFMT’s Midnight Special, is on-line.

Darden plays the role of “Prof. Walther von der Vogelweide” (he took the name from a medieval German poet). The lecture begins:

“Now, why, you will ask me, have I chosen to speak on the Universe rather than some other topic. Well, it’s very simple, heh. There isn’t anything else!”

If you have ever heard me or mia_mcdavid say “fish think, but not fast enough”, this is where we got the phrase.

I would like to find a recording or a transcript of “Free will and necessity in the light of Oedipus Rex: What would have happened to Oedipus if he had read the book before going on the journey.” In this lecture the Professor plays the role of Oedipus. The Wikipedia article on Darden includes a great quotation from it:

Sphinx: “Think of the power—of the glory—”.
Professor: “I don’t need power and glory, I’m a full professor.”

Having known quite a few full professors at the University of Chicago (which Darden attended) I understand this perfectly.

However, Wikipedia did not include the concluding line:

“Men have free will. Tragic heroes do not.”

This has warped my understanding of drama and opera for decades.

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