Building on the legacy of the menagerie owners and showmen of the 18th century, Jamrach’s menagerie was seen as ‘animal HQ’ and supplied its customers with all their animal needs, whether a pet, a scientific specimen, or the newest ‘star’ destined for the zoological gardens. This talk will focus on the history of exotic animal trade, paying particular attention to Charles Jamrach’s animal emporium and the insight it can offer into this curious industry.
This lecture has Speech-to-Text provided by Stagetext
Join us for a public lecture on False Memories by renowned psychologist Elizabeth Loftus to celebrate the launch of Goldsmiths’ Forensic Psychology Unit.
The talk will be followed by an all-star panel of international experts who will discuss how psychology will help shape the future of criminal investigations. There will be an opportunity for questions from the audience.
Elizabeth Loftus is Distinguished Professor at the University of California, Irvine. Since the 1970s, she has created an impressive body of scholarly work in human memory, eyewitness testimony, and the debunking of recovered memory theories. She has appeared as an expert witness in hundreds of courtrooms, bolstering the cases of defendants facing criminal charges based on eyewitness testimony. In 2002, Professor Loftus was ranked 58th in the Review of General Psychology’s list of the 100 most influential 20th century psychologists, and was the highest ranked woman on the list.
Elizabeth Loftus, Distinguished Professor at the University of California, Irvine.
Professor Fiona Gabbert, Forensic Psychology Unit Director, Goldsmiths.
Dr James Ost, University of Portsmouth.
Professor Julian Boon, University of Leicester.
Professor Chris French, Goldsmiths.
Professor Tim Valentine, Goldsmiths.
Dr Caoimhe McAnena, Goldsmiths.
Dr Ashok Jansari, Goldsmiths.
About the Forensic Psychology Unit
The new Unit brings together experts in the intersection between psychology and the legal system. Led by Director Fiona Gabbert, it is a hub for research in forensic psychology as well as undergraduate and postgraduate courses, research student supervision, short CPD courses and consultancy.
Join Professor John Curtice and other leading analysts as they dissect the implications of the recent general election at the launch of the first major book on the campaign and its outcome, Britain Votes 2015.
The general election was one of the most extraordinary contests of recent times, with an outcome that surprised many commentators. A race that was supposedly ‘neck-and-neck’ and heading for a hung Parliament resulted in the first majority Conservative government since 1992.
— So how did a fragmented political system actually deliver single party government and what are the consequences for the future of the British political system?
— Can the Conservative performance be explained by the ‘black widow effect’? And if so, having devoured the Lib Dems, what does the future now hold for David Cameron and his party given the structural problems it still faces and with an electorate whose support for it remains cagey and contingent?
— Despite ideological and political incoherence are there still significant opportunities for Labour to exploit in the future? Might brand distinctiveness help nullify the Conservative advantages on economic competence and leadership?
— What now for UKIP? Will the issue of immigration continue to exacerbate the break-down of the British party system?
— And what of the polls? Should there now be an inquiry not just into polling methodology, but also into how the media cover polls during an election campaign – can we get away from the horserace?
Join leading analysts and commentators to discuss these questions and more as they present the latest findings from their research on the election and assess what it all means for the future of British politics.
Professor Tim Bale
Professor of Politics at Queen Mary University of London, Tim is one of the leading commentators on British party politics. His most recent publications have chronicled the Five Year Mission: The Labour Party Under Ed Miliband and charted the development of The Conservative Party from Thatcher to Cameron. He is also a regular media commentator with articles featuring frequently in the Guardian, Daily Telegraph, and Financial Times.
Professor Sarah Childs
Professor of Politics and Gender at the University of Bristol, Sarah was a special adviser to the Speaker’s Conference on Parliamentary Representation and is currently on a ‘knowledge exchange secondment’ exploring how to make the House of Commons a more gender sensitive institution. She has written widely about women’s representation and party politics, most recently in her book, Sex, Gender and the Conservative Party: From Iron Lady to Kitten Heels.
Professor John Curtice
Professor of Politics at the University of Strathclyde, John led the team of academics that produced the general election night exit poll that delivered the now famous 10pm forecast of the final result. He currently serves as President of the British Polling Council which, following the election, set up an inquiry into the performance of the opinion polls. He is Research Consultant at NatCen Social Research where he co-edits the British Social Attitudes Survey. He was recently awarded an ESRC Fellowship to lead work on a new research initiative, ‘The UK in a Changing Europe’, which will provide easy access to comprehensive, impartial information about what the public thinks about Europe in advance of the proposed referendum on the UK’s membership of the EU.
Professor Matthew Goodwin
Professor of Political Science at the University of Kent, Matthew’s latest book, Revolt on the Right, won the 2015 Paddy Power Political Book of the Year award. A Senior Visiting Fellow at Chatham House he is the leading analyst of radical right politics. With unprecedented access to UKIP his forthcoming book, UKIP : Inside the Campaign to Redraw the Map of British Politics, will tell the inside story of the party’s election quest.
Free thinkers from the worlds of art, activism, comedy and academia will take the stage at an ‘alternative TED talks’ in aid of some of London’s most socially excluded people.
Organised by SHP, the charity for homeless and vulnerable people in London, the Outsider Lectures will challenge accepted thinking on a range of subjects, from drug addiction and mental health to poverty and the housing crisis.
A line-up of speakers from eclectic backgrounds will present talks that explore, challenge and interrogate the idea of ‘the outsider’, drawing on their expertise and sharing their personal experiences with the audience.
Like the TED talks on which they are based, the Outsider Lectures will be filmed and made available to stream online. In addition to raising money for homeless and vulnerable people, the event will provide a platform from which to air fresh ideas and debate issues from unusual perspectives.
Date: Wednesday 9th of September
Time: 19.00 – 23.30
Venue: Union chapel bar, Islington, N1 2UN
Tickets are £15 in advance. All proceeds will go to SHP to support London’s most vulnerable people.
‘Codes, Coincidences & Chocolate Fountains: How Numbers Shape our Lives’ is a pre-congress event for the European Skeptics Congress (http://euroscepticscon.org/). A fun look at maths with Simon Singh, Chris French, Rob Eastaway and Helen Wilson. This meeting is in the main congress lecture theatre from 14.30 to 17.00 on Thursday September 10th. The full programme is given below.
14:30 – 15:00 On Coincidences and the Paranormal (Chris French)
Biography: Chris French is a Professor of Psychology and Head of the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit at Goldsmiths. His latest book (with Anna Stone) is Anomalistic Psychology: Exploring Paranormal Belief and Experience.
Summary: Skeptics often dismiss paranormal claims, such as precognitive dreams, as being nothing more than coincidences. This talk assesses whether such an explanation is reasonable.
15:00 – 15:30 From Homer’s Last Theorem to Cryptography (Simon Singh)
Biography: After completing a PhD in particle physics, Simon Singh joined the BBC Science Department as a producer and director. After directing a documentary about Fermat’s Last Theorem, he wrote a book on the subject and has since written four more books. He has been interested in skepticism for several years and founded The Good Thinking Society, a UK-based charity that promotes good science and challenges pseudoscience.
Summary: Simon discusses his three mathematical books, namely Fermat’s Last Theorem, The Code Book and The Simpsons & Their Mathematical Secrets.
15:40 – 16:10 I Wasn’t Expecting That (Rob Eastaway)
Biography: Rob Eastaway is the author or co-author of twelve books, including the bestselling Why Do Buses Come in Threes? and Maths for Mums and Dads. He is the Director of Maths Inspiration, a national programme of theatre-based lecture shows that were attended by nearly 20,000 teenagers last year. He regularly appears on radio programmes such as More or Less and Today to discuss the maths of everyday life.
Summary: As humans we depend on our intuition to make many of our decisions. And most of the time it works. But when intuition doesn’t work it can go spectacularly wrong. Rob will give some of his favourite examples, and will discuss why mathematicians seem to so often delight in the counter-intuitive.
16:10 – 16:30 The Mathematics of Chocolate (Helen Wilson)
Biography: Helen Wilson is an applied mathematician, and deputy head of UCL’s Maths department.
Summary: Helen’s research focuses on non-Newtonian fluids – fluids that don’t follow the standard rules of air and water. Industrially, that often means molten plastic; today, it’s chocolate.
Greenwich Skeptics in the Pub presents: ‘The Growth of Skepticism: The UK Experience’ – a pre-congress event for the European Skeptics Congress (http://euroscepticscon.org/). Chris French, Wendy Grossman, Mike Heap, Mike Hutchinson, Deborah Hyde, Michael Marshall, Ian Ridpath and last but not least, Richard Wiseman will each give a brief talk about the growth of skepticism in the UK. European colleagues are very welcome to share their experiences in their own countries. This meeting is in ‘The Stretch’ in Goldsmith College’s Students Union on Thursday September 10th and the first speaker is scheduled for 19.30. Being a Skeptics in the Pub event, the atmosphere will be informal and there will of course be a bar!
Dr Claire Chatterton, Chair of the History of Nursing Society, considers the impact of the government requisition of asylums for use as military hospitals during the First World War on civilian psychiatric care.
Julie Bindel, Brendan O’Neill, Pam Lowe and Samira Ahmed discuss university censorship.
There is a growing trend among students for self-imposed censorship within university spaces. Various speakers have been ‘no platformed’ or banned by student groups, students with ‘unacceptable’ viewpoints have been censured and silenced, student events have been cancelled because of the threat of disruptive protests by those who hold different viewpoints.
Should universities give in to their students and make sure that campuses are free from intellectual challenge both inside and outside the lecture hall or do the academic faculty have a duty to students to “enrich their minds with […] knowledge”?
As universities are more and more run as businesses and students are paying for their education, is it perhaps time to ask ‘is the customer always right?’
It is now possible to register for the 16th European Skeptics Congress on the congress website (http://euroscepticscon.org/). The congress is held under the auspices of ECSO (the European Council of Skeptical Organisations), and is jointly organised by ASKE (the Association for Skeptical Enquiry) and APRU (the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit at Goldsmiths College).
The congress will feature presentations from a number of experts in the field of scientific scepticism, including Professor Jim Al-Khalili, who will deliver the keynote, and Emeritus Professor Edzard Ernst, Professor Susan Bewley, Dr James May, Dr Catherine de Jong, Dr Maciej Zatonski, Mark Lynas, Deborah Hyde, Professor Richard Wiseman and Professor Chris French.
The venue will be the Professor Stuart Hall Building, Goldsmiths. The dates are Friday 11th to Sunday (lunchtime) 13th September 2015, and there will also be a pre-congress event on Thursday afternoon.
We have tried to keep the fee affordable – it is £135, which covers attendance on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (morning) and includes refreshments at breaks and buffet lunch on both Friday and Saturday.
Further information, including details about accommodation, is on the website.
Greenwich Skeptics in the Pub presents: ‘The Science of Magic: Why does magic work? Insights into the illusions of the mind’ by Gustav Khun – a pre-congress event for the European Skeptics Congress (http://euroscepticscon.org/). ‘Magic is one of the oldest art forms, and for centuries magicians have created illusions of the impossible. Some have used these illusions as demonstrations of supernatural powers. However, advances in Psychology and Neuroscience offer new insights into why our minds are so easily deceived. I am a Magician and Psychologist with an interest in researching some of the mechanisms involved in magic. Instead of relying on supernatural powers, magicians have developed powerful psychological principle to distort our perception and thoughts. In this talk we will explore some of the principles used by magicians to distort your perception. For example, we will look at how magicians use misdirection to manipulate your attention and thereby prevent you from noticing things even though they might be right in front of your eyes. Alternatively, magicians may manipulate your expectations about the world and thus bias the way you perceive objects and can even make you see things that aren’t necessarily there. At first sight, our proneness to being fooled by conjuring tricks could be interpreted as a weakness of the human mind. However, contrary to this popular belief, I will demonstrate that these “errors” in fact reveal the complexity of visual perception and highlight the ingenuity of the human mind.’
Dr Gustav Kuhn worked as a professional magician and it was his interest in deception and illusions that sparked a curiosity about the human mind. Gustav is a senior lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London, and one of the leading researchers in the science of magic.
This meeting takes place in the ‘The Stretch’ on Friday September 11th starting at 19.30 hours.
Start your Saturday with a bit of exercise for your grey cells!
In this entertaining and accessible excursion into philosophy, Oxford Professor of Logic Timothy Williamson uses a fictional conversation, played out by four actors, to explore questions about truth and falsity, knowledge and belief.
Who is right? Who is wrong? Join Professor Williamson to decide.
In Why Men Skim Stones, Chris Windle provides an indispensable insight into why men do the things they do from angling in the rain, building a shelter when there’s a bed waiting at home or peeing as high as he can up a wall. He is joined by Tim Dowling, Guardian columnist, member of the band Police Dog Hogan and author of How to Be a Husband.
This talk could save relationships, smooth family life or provide much needed reassurance for any man seeking to better understand his own actions or for any woman still trying!
Chaired by Tim Samuels, award-winning documentary filmmaker and broadcaster, host of Men’s Hour on Radio 5.
Killer Women, the crime-writing collective, bring their unique brand of debate to Kings Place. Powerful, sexy, toxic: the bitch is a great crime archetype. Is the genre finally moving away from victims and mothers? Is writing about bitches feminist or misogynist?
Erin Kelly chairs fellow authors Paula Hawkins (The Girl on the Train), Laura Wilson (The Wrong Girl) and Kate Rhodes (The Winter Foundlings) in the discussion. Expect controversy, black humour and a criminally good time.
killerwomen.org | paulahawkinsbooks.com | laura-wilson.co.uk | katerhodes.org
Inequality, oppression, corruption, war and the destruction of nature are products of the Political Economy shaped to benefit the Structural Elite, and rooted in the hierarchical structure of society.
Hierarchy has emerged from man’s domination of nature, ultimately enabling the concentration of power and wealth in the hands of the few.
This power has created a global economic system founded on three fundamental flaws, whereby a very small minority control:
- land, resources and knowledge which rightfully belong to no-one and should be accessible to all
- the means to life
The majority compete for a reducing share of the diminishing wealth of the planet.
In this presentation Clive Menzies will present a penetrating analysis of this interpretation of the undoubted present woes in today’s society and will argue from an apolitical standpoint that salvation lies in the dissolution of hierarchy. The challenge is how?
Clive Menzies is a political economist, editor and communicator at Critical Thinking at the Free University. Critical Thinking is an apolitical, collaborative research and education project that analyses the current political economy to identify fundamental flaws and potential levers for change. The organisation aims to understand the historical context of issues from different perspectives and their current and future impacts on social cohesion, inequality, individual liberty and civilisation as we know it. Critical Thinking has developed a unified theory of political economy and has formulated a prescription for action to create a freer, fairer world.
Doors 10.30. Entry £3, £2 concs./free to Conway Hall Ethical Society members.
Tea, coffee & biscuits will be available.
Cultural historian Tiffany Watt-Smith has made an inventory of over a hundred emotions from anger to zeal, blushing to yawning, apathy to empathy, and euphoria to disgust. She covers the globe and draws on history, anthropology, science, art, literature, music and popular culture to find the answers and tickle our humour.
Join Jillian of Feather and Flask and Adrian Teal on a journey behind the curtains to the eighteenth century stage, where you will then craft a fascinator fit for any grand theatre entrance of your own!
Acclaimed caricaturist and author of the scurrilous Gin Lane Gazette, Adrian Teal, will regale you with salacious and intriguing tales of the gorgeous Georgians, as he introduces you to some of the people who created a stir both on and off stage.
The eighteenth century saw an explosion of interest in fashion, with many ladies of the beau monde going to extraordinary lengths to outdo each other. Adrian will enchant you with anecdotes of the society beauties and actresses who created sartorial trends of their own, and of the most outrageous fashion statements of the era.
After your head has been filled with with these tantalising tales and your imagination has piqued you will then turn to the tables which are filled to the brim with materials and adornments. Jillian of Feather and Flask will instruct you in fascinator making techniques so you can make a fascinator of your very own using such things as silk, flowers, ribbon and feathers and more.
Following such creativity, we will then partake in a well-earned gin and tonic to continue the entertainment in true eighteenth-century style
Ella Frances Sanders describes herself as writer out of necessity, illustrator by accident. She is the author of the exquisite Lost in Translation, a beautifully illustrated exploration of language through 52 wonderful, elusive words which have no single direct translation in English.
Chaired by Sarah Ardizzone, award-winning translator, critic and journalist.
Join us at the Royal Geographical Society with African Parks Manager Rian Labuschagne to discuss the success story of elephant conservation in Zakouma National Park in Chad and the future for conservation.
Described as one of the last strongholds for central African wildlife, Zakouma is especially renowned for its free roaming herds of African elephants. Despite approximately 4,000 of them being killed from 2005, not a single elephant has been poached inside the park since 2011 and numbers are now on the rise. The elephants are the poster boys for Zakouma and are a rare conservation success story. This is undoubtedly largely down to the great work of the African Parks team, who are defiant in the struggle against poaching in spite of the killing of six of their rangers in 2012 by Sudanese poachers.
Since African Parks involvement in 2010, Zakouma National Park has also seen most species of larger mammals, including buffalo, giraffe, roan antelope and Lelwel’s hartebeest increase in number. In fact, with the planned reintroduction of the rhino, Zakouma will be the closest park to Europe that has the Big Five.
The Gods of the Platonic Tradition – a talk by Tim Addey (with plenty of time for a general post-lecture discussion)
Plato and the other sages of the Platonic tradition in the ancient world were pagans: they actively promoted communion with the Gods, and in their writings referred to particular Gods and Goddesses in connection with particular cosmic and human activities.
Why was this? Modern commentators often suggest that this was merely cultural conditioning, and an aspect of the Platonic tradition which can safely be ignored. But this upholding of pagan practices continued well into the sixth century AD and so strong was their adherence, that in 529AD the Emperor Justinian forced the closure of the Platonic schools simply because they were the main source of opposition to the contemporary Christian Church and Christianized Imperial power. Perhaps, then, there were good reasons that these philosophers framed their philosophy within the pagan worldview. This lecture and study session will look at the metaphysical and theological basis of the Platonic tradition and explore this largely neglected area of philosophy. We will ask whether a coherent metaphysics is possible without the Gods, and whether human life, both ethical and artistic, is enhanced by a philosophy which affirms that “all things are full of the Gods.”
The lecture will be timed at around 30 or so minutes, to allow an extensive discussion afterwards. The evening will be self-contained but for those who are interested we will follow up the lecture with two further sessions in the following two months: one of which will be based on a reading of three pages from Thomas Taylor’s introduction to Proclus’ Theology of Plato; and the other on a reading of two pages from Proclus’ Commentary on the Parmenides of Plato.
No previous experience of formal philosophy is required.
Entrance in free, but donations between £3-5 will be welcomed.
More details on the Prometheus Trust’s website: www.prometheustrust.co.uk on the “London Monday Evenings” page.
Several years ago, University of Oxford psychologist Kevin Dutton invited former SAS soldier Andy McNab into his lab to take a real-life version of Blade Runner’s Voight-Kampff ‘replicant’ test. The results were revelatory and from it the concept of ‘the good psychopath’ was born. Join them both to find out what happened next…
Holding a cane in his right hand, Movses Haneshyan, 105, slowly approaches a life-size landscape.
He pauses, looks at the image, and begins to sing: “My home… My Armenia.”
It’s the first time Movses is seeing his home in 98 years.
A century ago, on the eve of World War I, there were two million Armenians living in the Ottoman Empire. By the early 1920s, when the massacres and deportations finally ended, one and a half million of them were dead, with many more forcibly removed from the country.
The picture Movses is looking at is taken by Armenian-American photographer Diana Markosian. She traveled to Armenia to meet Movses and other survivors, to ask them about their last memories of their early home. She then retraced their steps in Turkey to retrieve a piece of their lost homeland.
She will be joining us to show her work and share the stories of the survivors she met who, 100 years on, still remember their home.
Diana Markosian is an Armenian-American photographer whose work explores the relationship between memory and place. She received her master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism at 20. Her work has since taken her to some of the most remote corners of the world, where she has worked on both personal and editorial work. Her images can be found in publications including The New York Times, The New Yorker and Time Magazine. Her work is represented by Reportage by Getty Images.
London competes on a global stage, but what price does its infrastructure pay for doing so? With growing pressure on housing, transport and public services, is it time to rethink growth in the capital?
Join us for a panel discussion as part of our 21st Century Challenges series.
Pippa Crerar (Chair), City Hall Editor, London Evening Standard
Lord Adonis, Reformer, writer and Labour peer. Non-executive board member of HS2 Ltd. Former Secretary of State for Transport, Minister for Schools, Head of the No.10 Policy Unit, and senior No. 10 adviser on education, public services and constitutional reform. Author of books including ‘5 Days in May: The Coalition and Beyond’.
Bridget Rosewell OBE, Economist and business woman. Senior adviser at Volterra Partners, chair of Audit for Network Rail, author of ‘Reinventing London’ and former Chief Economic Adviser to the Greater London Authority.
Jules Pipe CBE, Mayor of Hackney, Chair of London Councils and member of the London Enterprise Panel.
Book online: www.rgs.org/21cc
Book by phone: +44 (0)20 7591 3100
Venue: Exhibition road doors open at 6.00pm. A bar will be open before and after the event.
Image credit: Mariusz Kluzniak (Flickr)
JustShare, in collaboration with Global Justice Now, present a debate exploring both sides of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) agreement.
Affirmative: Jacqueline Minor, Head of Representation for the European Commission
Negative: Polly Jones, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Global Justice Now and member of the Trade Justice Movement
Moderated by Martin Vander Weyer, Business Editor of The Spectator
TTIP is a controversial proposed free trade and investment treaty currently being agreed between the European Union and the United States. Proponents say the treaty will result in multilateral economic growth, create millions of new jobs, and strengthen EU/US global competitiveness by reducing trade barriers. But a large number of organisations have voiced opposition to TTIP, ranging from the British Medical Association to the Green Party and many in between. They question the models that predicts economic growth if TTIP goes through, and say that TTIP will lead to lower standards and regulations that currently protect public health, the environment and workers’ rights, and give too much power to multinational corporations.
This debate aims to educate the public on an agreement with which few are familiar, but for many will be life changing. What effect will this have on the average person, the City, and the developing world?