The Great Ideas
1954 Dr. Mortimer Adler hosted a live weekly television
series in San Francisco, comprised of 52 half-hour
programs entitled The Great Ideas. These programs were
produced by the Institute for Philosophical Research
and were carried as a public service by the American
Broadcasting Company, presented by (NET) National
Television, the precursor to what is now PBS.
only the Bay-area residents were fortunate to see and hear Dr.
Adler deliver these highly instructive and penetrating programs.
Were it not for the foresight of Dr. Adler and his colleagues,
to film each telecast (as this was a time before videotape) they
would have been lost. Dr.
Adler bequeathed these films to the Center, making this invaluable
work available to our universities, colleges, high schools, libraries,
fellow citizens, and particularly to our young people who may not be
aware of his important contributions. These half-hour programs are
the perfect length for use in your home, office, classrooms, or discussion
television presentation techniques have improved since then, it is the
content of these programs that remains timeless and relevant to our