The Moment taps famous thinkers for answers to modern issues

Mark Johnson's picture
by Mark Johnson

If you want to know what Sigmund Freud would have made of the selfie, or how Simone De Beauvoir would have viewed #MeToo, creative content agency The Moment has dug up the answers for BBC Ideas.

The Moment, which is a division of The Creative Engagement Group (TCEG), has created four new animated short films for BBC Ideas, looking at how famous thinkers from the past would interpret contemporary issues and phenomena. Each film addresses its own thought-provoking question. 

Freud on selfies; Plato on Brexit

The first film asks what would the founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, make of the selfie? The second ponders how Greek poet Sappho would view today’s attitudes towards sexuality? 

With Brexit high in people’s minds at the moment another film considers, if Plato were alive today, what would he think of the modern referendum? 

Finally, the last film examines how French writer and feminist Simone de Beauvoir could have reacted to the #MeToo movement.

#MeToo: What would Simone De Beauvoir make of the movement?

Each film has been produced, illustrated and animated in-house by The Moment’s and TCEG’s teams in Plymouth, London, Manchester and the USA. They also worked alongside academic experts to ensure that each film had a solid theoretical background. 

Collaboration with BBC Ideas

“We have loved collaborating again with BBC Ideas to produce four more films”, Alice Kilpatrick, co-head of film production at The Moment & TCEG. “It’s such an interesting project – bringing together thought-provoking thinkers from the past to create fresh perspectives on the big issues of today and bringing them to life in a creative, intelligent and watchable way.”

The commission comes following the success of an earlier animation created by The Moment, following an open call from BBC Ideas. 

That film, created in conjunction with academic Angie Hobbs and in partnership with The Open University, looked at what philosopher Michel Foucault would make of the rise of fake news.

BBC Ideas is a new short-form digital video project from the BBC focused on “short films for curious minds”. The brief for content is to create short videos that teach the viewer something or bring them a new perspective on an existing idea, person or subject. 

Initially, the platform was to run for a year, but this has now been extended.

Along with the Foucault film, The Moment has had a separate film, ‘Cognitive Bias: Is your brain your own worst enemy?’, also featured on BBC Ideas.

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