An eminent philosopher of science and a skilled scuba diver, Peter Godfrey-Smith explores cephalopods and human consciousness in his bestselling book Other Minds. He takes to the Festival stage to share his learnings about how the solitary octopus became so smart. He explains what it might be like to have eight tentacles so packed with neurons and sensors that they explore the world for themselves, and how a growing awareness of other types of minds is prompting a reassessment of our place in the world.

Peter Godfrey-Smith (Australian)

Peter Godfrey-Smith

Peter Godfrey-Smith studied at the University of Sydney and the University of California at San Diego. He has taught philosophy at Stanford, Harvard, Australian National University, the CUNY Graduate Center, and the University of Sydney. He is the author of five books, including Other Minds: The Octopus and the Evolution of Intelligent Life.

Liam Pieper (Australian)

Liam Pieper

Liam Pieper's 2014 memoir, The Feel-Good Hit of the Year was shortlisted for the National Biography Award and the Ned Kelly Best True Crime award. This was followed by Mistakes Were Made, a collection of essays about why you should never write a memoir. In 2015 he was the inaugural creative resident of the UNESCO City of Literature of Prague, where he completed his first novel The Toymaker which has been widely translated and won the Fellowship of Australian Writers Christina Stead Fiction Award. He was the 2018 National Library of Australia Creative Arts Fellow for Australian Writing.