Tacit Knowing, Truthful Knowing


"Tacit Knowing, Truthful Knowing: The Life and Work of Michael Polanyi," Kate Burke and Ken Myers, co-hosts (Mars Hill Audio Reports, 1999); https://marshillaudio.org/products/hra-2-m


"Tacit Knowing, Truthful Knowing: The Life and Work of Michael Polanyi." Kate Burke and Ken Myers, co-hosts. Mars Hill Audio Reports, 1999; https://marshillaudio.org/products/hra-2-m

Publication life cycle / General notes

Total length: 2 hours, 30 minutes. 

This audio production provides an overview and analysis of the life and work of Michael Polanyi. Spoken comments by various contributors appear throughout. TFT speaks at 1 hr 55 mins for about 7 minutes.

Format: It was originally distributed as a set of two cassette tapes (see photos, provided by Marty Folsom). It is now available as a protected audio book, ".m4b" format. Listen on the Mars Hill website through a web browser; or use the MHA app on Android or iOS; or import it into your books app (e.g., "Books" on a Mac) rather than your mp3/mp4 music app (e.g., it will not work with the iTunes or Music apps on a Mac).


Though largely ignored, the work of research chemist-turned-philosopher Michael Polanyi (1891-1976) offers rich insight into the methods of science, the role of belief in all human knowing, and the important connections between knowledge and responsibility. Tacit Knowing, Truthful Knowing explores Michael Polanyi's criticisms of both objectivism and subjectivism, and his attempts to develop a more truthful understanding of how we know the world. His ideas are based on the belief that all knowledge is either tacit (silent and unspoken) or rooted in tacit knowledge.

This Report features interviews with leading interpreters of Polanyi's thought, including Marjorie GreneRichard GelwickThomas Torrance, and Martin X. Moleski. Interviews with Nobel Prize-winning chemist Dudley Herschbach, educator Steven Garber, and master violin makers Peter and Wendy Moes, along with readings from Michael Polanyi's books and correspondence, further illuminate his ideas. [Also Gerald Holton.]

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