Fire and explosions: The science of pyrotechnic effects
Feb 15 @ 6:00 pm – 7:15 pm

How do we make gunpowder and launch fireworks in the air? How do they create the intricate patterns in the sky at firework displays or the bangs, whistles and crackles for sound effects?

Join one of the UK’s most popular pyrotechnics presenter Matthew Tosh for a journey from fundamental combustion to the complex and visual effects seen around the world. Be prepared for some fiery demos and explosive bangs at this show for families.

Moon (2009) & TALK: Scratching the Surface
Feb 15 @ 7:30 pm – 10:00 pm
Moon (2009) & TALK: Scratching the Surface @ The Victoria | London | United Kingdom

Sam Bell (Sam Rockwell) is nearing the completion of his 3-year-long contract with Lunar Industries, mining Earth’s primary source of energy on the dark side of the moon. Alone with only the base’s vigilant computer Gerty (Kevin Spacey) as his sole companion, Bell’s extended isolation has taken its toll. His only link to the outside world comes via satellite messages from his wife and young daughter. He longs to return home, but a terrible accident on the lunar surface leads to a disturbing discovery that contributes to his growing sense of paranoia and dislocation so many miles away from home.

The film will be preceded by a talk from Dr Tony Milligan, teaching fellow in ethics and philosophy of religion at Kings College London, who will explore the morality, ethics and justification for mining the moon.

Queers in the Pub: For Love or Money
Feb 15 @ 7:30 pm
Queers in the Pub: For Love or Money @ The Monarch Pub | London | United Kingdom

Itziar Bilbao Urrutia – Dominatrix, artist, activist, comes to Queers in the Pub with her Valentine’s special: “For love or money – Paid sex and the romantic myth”.

As Valentine’s Day approaches, romantic love as the highest and most selfless form of affection is peddled by many. Whilst romancing a woman with roses, chocolates and expensive dinners is seen as a sign of chivalry, the concept of buying intimacy in the form of sex work is still seen as a sign of failure on the part of the john who pays, and as proof of women’s oppression.

Why do women sell sex? And why do men buy it? Why is it so rare when the genders are inverted. We will explore how queer ideas question the hegemony of the couple, the family and gendered affection, and challenge centuries of moralistic condemnation of a profession that often, was the only way of earning money for minorities and the disempowered. With 14 years’ experience in the adult industry and currently writing her PhD on Femdom, Itziar Bilbao Urrutia is fascinated by the taboo of sex for pay.

Births and Families: The Magnificent Age of the Baroque
Feb 16 @ 10:45 am – 12:45 pm
Births and Families: The Magnificent Age of the Baroque @ The University Women's Club | London | United Kingdom

The Course offers a series of art history lectures on “The Magnificent Age of the Baroque” and will focus on how people lived – their homes, their decor, their fashion, their rituals – and how this was reflected in some of the most magnificent art of the age.

The family was represented in both a religious and secular context. Scenes of the Nativity and the Holy Family were depicted by Poussin (‘Holy Family on the Steps’) and there was an emphasis on images of loving fathers such as Joseph, newly elevated to a saint, in paintings by La Tour.

Gauss and Germain
Feb 16 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Gauss and Germain @ Museum of London, Barbican | London | England | United Kingdom

Carl Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855) was one of the greatest mathematicians of all time. Possibly his most famous work was his book on number theory, published in 1801. After reading this book, the French mathematicians Sophie Germain (1776-1831) began corresponding with Gauss about Fermat’s last theorem, using a male pseudonym.

Subsequently her interests moved to working on a general theory of vibrations of a curved surface which provided the basis for the modern theory of elasticity.

This is a free public lecture by Raymond Flood, Gresham Professor of Geometry.

There is no need to book in advance for this lecture. It runs on a first come first served basis.

The Art of the Image: Leonardo da Vinci and medical imaging
Feb 16 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
The Art of the Image: Leonardo da Vinci and medical imaging @ Hunterian Museum at the Royal College of Surgeons | London | United Kingdom

Leonardo da Vinci was one of the greatest anatomists ever to have lived. He personally dissected more than thirty human corpses to explore every aspect of anatomy and physiology, and recorded his findings in drawings of unparalleled beauty and lucidity. This talk will show his concepts as imaged today with the most up-to-date technology in the radiology departments across the world.
Speaker: Professor Peter Abrahams

Tickets: £4. Lectures last approximately 45 minutes with time for questions.
Free entry plus guest to RCS fellows and members, free entry to RCS affiliates, medical students and Hunterian Society members (please call to reserve places). Free place for companions accompanying disabled visitors.

Germs, Genes and Genesis: The History of Infectious Disease
Feb 16 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Germs, Genes and Genesis: The History of Infectious Disease @ Museum of London, Barbican | London | England | United Kingdom

Where do infectious diseases come from? Some come from animals, but we gave some back (as cattle picked up TB from farmers). Leviticus discusses the problem of leprosy at some length and even develops an early form of quarantine. Epidemics of various kinds began only when human populations and the first cities (Babylon included) were large enough to sustain the infectious agents responsible.

Now genetics, of humans and their enemies, is beginning to tell us more. And the news is not good.

This is a free public lecture by Professor Steve Jones, Visiting Gresham Professor of Genetics.

There is no need to book in advance for this lecture. It runs on a first come first served basis.

Germany and the making of the new Europe
Feb 16 @ 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm


Germany regained its position at the centre of Europe with its reunification and with the EU’s enlargement to the east. Germany has changed radically since the Second World War. It is more comfortable with its identity and with its place in Europe – more so than either France or Britain. Yet its leadership of the new European project remains reluctant – even though it is inevitable. This lecture seeks answers to the questions this poses: how will Germany cope with the many challenges Europe faces? How will others cope with its role in meeting those challenges? And what does this all mean for the future of Europe on the world stage of the twenty first century?

Meet Lord Green:

Lord Green began his career with the British Government’s Ministry of Overseas Development and then joined The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation in 1982. In 1992, he became Group Treasurer of HSBC Holdings plc with responsibility for the HSBC Group’s treasury and capital markets businesses globally. He was then subsequaently appointed to the Board of HSBC Holdings plc as Executive Director, Investment Banking and Markets, Chief Executive in 2003, and Group Chairman in 2006. In addition to this he is Chairman of the Natural History Museum, Chairman of the International Advisory Council of the British Chambers of Commerce and is a member of the House of Lords EU Select Committee.

Lord Green has written four books – Serving God? Serving Mammon? [1996] Good Value, Choosing a Better Life in Business [2009], Reluctant Meister – How Germany’s Past is Shaping its European Future [2014] and The European Identity – Historical and Cultural Realities We Cannot Deny [2015

The Inexorable Rise of AI, Social Machines & the Data Deluge w/@Nigel_Shadbolt
Feb 16 @ 6:30 pm
The Inexorable Rise of AI, Social Machines & the Data Deluge w/@Nigel_Shadbolt @ King's College London, The Great Hall, Strand Campus | London | United Kingdom

We live in an age of superabundant information and the power of computers increases exponentially.

The power of computers has led to systems such as Watson and companies such as Deep Mind which raise questions about the emergence of artificial intelligence. What is the reality and what do we know about making smart software?

In the meantime the Internet and World Wide Web have transformed our lives. However, our understanding of these systems when used by millions globally is still in its infancy. What are the insights that studying these Social Machines provide to help us understand the evolving Web of the 21st Century?

Open data published on the Web is improving the efficiency of our public services and giving rise to open innovation. Data collected at scale by public and private agencies also gives rise to concerns about its use and abuse. This data deluge also presents challenges.
This lecture will discuss these fast moving developments and how they complement each other.


Sir Nigel Shadbolt is Professor of Computer Science at the University of Oxford and Principal of Jesus College. He is also the Chairman and Co-Founder of the Open Data Institute (ODI). Since 2009, Sir Nigel has acted as an Information Adviser to the UK Government, helping transform public access to Government information, including the widely acclaimed data.gov.uk site.
With over 500 publications he researches and publishes on computer science, artificial intelligence, open data and web science. During his career, he has also worked in philosophy, psychology and linguistics. Since 2000 he has secured 17 projects as Principal Investigator with a value of over £20 million pounds. He is currently Principal Investigator on a £6.14M EPSRC funded Programme Grant researching the theory of social machines – Web scale problem solving systems comprising large numbers of humans and computers.

In 2006 he was one of three founding Directors of Garlik Ltd, which in 2008 was awarded Technology Pioneer status by the Davos World Economic Forum and won the prestigious UK national BT Flagship Award. Garlik was acquired by Experian Ltd in 2011. In 2013 he was awarded a Knighthood for services to science and engineering.

Worlds Elsewhere: How Shakespeare went global
Feb 16 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
Worlds Elsewhere: How Shakespeare went global @ Dartmouth House | London | United Kingdom

Anti-apartheid activist, Bollywood screenwriter, hero of the Wild West: this is Shakespeare as you have never seen him before. Andrew Dickson has traced the impact of the Bard’s words across four continents, six countries and 400 years to discover just how one man from Stratford-upon-Avon became an international phenomenon.

Join Andrew as he shares his insights into what Shakespeare means across the world, and throughout the years.

Copies of Andrew’s book, Worlds Elsewhere: Journeys Around Shakespeare’s Globe, will be on sale after the event.

How to Choose a Doctor or Surgeon
Feb 17 @ 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
How to Choose a Doctor or Surgeon @ Museum of London, Barbican | London | England | United Kingdom

Various governments have promoted ‘patient choice’ as part of NHS reforms. Yet few people know how either to make that choice or how to exercise it.

This lecture will consider the criteria one might use to differentiate one doctor from another or one surgeon from another, and whether you should be judging the individual, the team they work in or the organisation that houses them. We will also consider whether the promises of patient choice are either real or implementable in the new NHS, and how you, as a member of the public, might navigate the system and get your way.

Professor Elliott will be joined by Dr Neil Bacon FRCP to deliver this lecture.

This is a free public lecture by Martin Elliott, Gresham Professor of Physic.

There is no need to book in advance for this lecture. It runs on a first come first served basis.

Nursing Loud and Proud w/@PeterTatchell
Feb 17 @ 6:00 pm
Nursing Loud and Proud w/@PeterTatchell @ Royal College of Nursing Library and Heritage Centre | London | United Kingdom

For LGBT History Month Peter Tatchell joins us to tell the little known story of his hunt for the doctor who experimented on gay concentration camp prisoners and escaped justice. Also speaking is Jason Warriner, Chair of the RCN Public Health Forum and an HIV specialist nurse, who will introduce the history of the RCN’s involvement in Pride; the first of the Royal Colleges to march.

Open to all and refreshments provided. This talk is part of the RCN public lecture series.

For more about Peter Tatchell’s work visit the Peter Tatchell Foundation website.

A Humanistic Perspective on the Caste System in India and the UK
Feb 17 @ 7:00 pm
A Humanistic Perspective on the Caste System in India and the UK @ Conway Hall | London | United Kingdom

Amarijt Singh, who sometimes goes under the pen name Shukra is a Dalit activist who has been involved in Dalit issues since his childhood days. He spent much of his times in the Punjab countryside before emigrating to Britain at the age of 14. He has written polemical articles in various newspaper and magazines and in newspapers. Some of these have been translated into other South Asian and SE Asian languages. He holds a professional post in the UK. His testimony was published in Blackwell Publishers The Sociological Review.

The Caste system is one of the most complex socio-political class system and the most enduring that the ancient the world has ever known. It is also one of the most oppressive social system and it is often compared to the Apartheid system although the latter did not have untouchability, Devadasis etc. Caste system is actively sanctioned by Hindu scriptures which is the ideology of the right wing Hindus in India and and the Indian right wing in the UK. Other South Asian religions professing to condone social equality such as Islam, Sikhism and Christianity have also adopted the Hindu model in practice showing that any generalised statement about the caste system can be contradicted by yet another completely opposite statement, such is the bewildering nature of the Indian caste system. One scholar has called it a Pandora’s box of Indology which requires an in depth study of at least a couple of dozen subjects related to Indology.

What is generally not known and what even the scholars tend to ignore, is that the earliest opposition to the caste system came from the materialist humanists, before the common era. The literature on this tradition outweighs all the western philosophical literature put together. This tradition has never really died out in India and it still remains the best tool for analysing the India caste society.

The talk will explore the history and practice of the caste system both in India and in the UK, from a humanist viewpoint.

Doors at 6.30 pm for talk at 7.00 pm

Please arrive early to have a glass of wine from our charity wine bar, find your seat and chat with other members.

Profit from the wine bar will be donated to Amarjit’s chosen charity: Shelter from the Storm. I know many members will agree that this is an excellent choice!

Please note, we now charge an entrance fee of £2 to help towards the hire of the venue and equipment. If you feel are unable to attend and would still like to contribute, or would prefer to pay online, we would be very grateful.

Credit to Horrible Histories Collection for image

Ancient Worlds Cities, Sites & Peoples: The Silk Route Then and Now: Past and Present
Feb 18 @ 10:45 am – 12:45 pm
Ancient Worlds Cities, Sites & Peoples: The Silk Route Then and Now: Past and Present @ The University Women's Club | London | United Kingdom

The stability of the Han dynasty brought unity and the opening of the Gansu corridor enabled free movement of people through eastern Asia to western China for the first time.

The Silk Road has held a fascination for travellers since the early Christian era, and many traders, religious pilgrims and conquerors have passed through the settlements and towns that stretch from Central Asia to the East China Sea. Along the various routes that make up the network of the ‘Silk Road’ – itself a misnomer – flourished an exotic mixture of cultures from Arabic, Turkic, Iranian, Indian, Mongolian, Chinese and Tibetan sources.

The richness of cultures is evident in spectacular sites ranging from abandoned cities and fortresses, Buddhist cave sites and Islamic mausoleums along the many trade routes that made the Silk Road network. The Taklamakan and Gobi desert regions yielded many artistic treasures to 19th and 20th century European archaeologists who explored – and plundered – many sites for their uniquely preserved artefacts. The research that came from these items revealed much more understanding about the relevance and significance of the Silk Road and its place in the economic history of the region.

The legacy of the Silk Road lives on through the artefacts, writings, maps and contribution of the many travellers throughout the region over many centuries. However, this legacy may soon be found only in museums and collections, as the rapidly changing landscape of modern technology changes the face of this region.

This series of 4 lectures aims to understand how and why the Silk Road trade network came into being and to explore reasons for the success and demise of its cities and traders in certain areas and eras. It will look at the diverse cultures that practiced different religions and produced exotic items that were traded freely along the routes, and what became of them in later years. It will also analyse how the present era of modernisation is changing the face of the Silk Road; the environmental impact of technological advances in the western regions of China and how they are affecting significant archaeological sites.

Brand Management – Get it Right!
Feb 18 @ 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Brand Management - Get it Right! @ Headspace | London | United Kingdom

The aim of this seminar is to help startups and SMEs manage their brand effectively as they grow. The speakers will provide advice and guidance to Founders, CEOs and Marketing professionals on legal issues, such as securing registrations and dealing with infringements. How to develop your brand tone of voice, social media strategies and get the most out of your social media platforms whilst maintaining brand consistency. Influencer engagement; how to make your brand the center of your communities and connect consumers to the influencers and their worlds. And finally, give first hand experience of what’s like to manage the brand reputation of a fast-growing company.


Katie McPhee – Strategic Marketing at Eventbrite
Mark Stafford – Brand Protection Partner at Lee & Thompson
Dudley Nevill-Spencer – Director of Brand Revolution
Alison Battisby – Founder of Avocado Social

Medieval Music: The Mystery of Women
Feb 18 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Medieval Music: The Mystery of Women @ St Sepulchre-Without-Newgate Church | London | United Kingdom

During the last thirty years, the name of Hildegard of Bingen (d. 1179) composer, abbess and naturalist, has been gradually rescued from obscurity, notably by recordings of her works. The lecture will provide an opportunity to hear some of Hildegard’s most impressive compositions but also to explore more widely the phenomenon of the medieval female composer. For while Hildegard was unique, she was not alone; the richness of the musical remains she has left eclipse every competitor, and yet there were many other female mystics who created rhapsodic spiritual song whose works have not survived. Many of them are little known, but here they will step into the light.

This is a free public lecture by Christopher Page, Gresham Professor of Music.

There is no need to book in advance for this lecture. It runs on a first come first served basis.

The science of sleep: Melatonin to neural pathways w/@vinwalsh
Feb 18 @ 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
The science of sleep: Melatonin to neural pathways w/@vinwalsh @ Royal Institution | London | United Kingdom

Why do we need sleep and what are the physiological processes driving our circadian rhythm? When is our circadian clock disrupted and how does this affect our health?

The science behind sleeplessness can help us understand our rhythms so we can help us live better and healthier lives. While hormones, such a melatonin, play a role in driving our circadian clock, the amount of sleep we get and our sleep cycles also affect our hormonal release patterns, with far-reaching implications on our health.

Cognitive neuroscientist Vincent Walsh will chair a discussion with a panel of experts who specialise in circadian rhythms. They will explore how light detection plays a role in our sleep-wake cycles, how hormone release is regulated and the implications of changes to our circadian clock and sleeplessness over time.

Supported by British Psychological Society and Society for Endocrinology.

Drugs on the Brain & Other Marvels w/@soozaphone @mollycrockett
Feb 19 @ 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Can drugs make us better people? What are the harms and potential benefits of recreational drugs? What is the relationship between the mind & brain? Just some of the fascinating questions explored by leading scientists in an evening of talks and demonstrations.

Join us to celebrate our first anniversary of connecting expert speakers with audiences in the famous Faraday Lecture theatre at the Royal Institution in London. The evening is focused on the brain but will showcase a variety of topics, formats and presenters from graduate students delivering their PhD thesis against the clock to professors talking about their research.

Dr. Suzi Gage

No Turn Unstoned? The harms and potential benefits of recreational drugs

The media love to sensationalise the dangers of illicit drug use, whilst downplaying or even ignoring the harms from legal drugs. Suzi takes us on a trip through the current scientific understanding of the harms, and also potential benefits of recreational drugs, both illegal and legal.

Dr. Molly Crockett

Could scientists create a morality pill?

Can pills change our morals? Neuroscientists are now discovering how hormones and brain chemicals shape social behavior, opening potential avenues for pharmacological manipulation of moral values. In this talk, Molly will describe research showing how brain chemistry can affect moral judgment and behavior, and evaluate the feasiblity of enhancing moral values with drugs.

Sir Colin Blakemore

Common Sense: the intelligence of perception

General lessons about public engagement in a talk about the senses and perception.


The Three Minute Challenge

An 80,000 word thesis would take 9 hours to present. Their time limit …..3 minutes.

Can they beat the clock?!

Dr. Andrew Steele (FameLab Finalist 2012) – Stereo Vision
Dr. Dominika Bijou (3MT® Semi-Finalist 2014) – “To Pee or Not to Pee”
Zaid Janjua (Vitae 3MT® UK Winner 2015) – “On Thin Ice”

Hosted by Bruce Hood, Mark Miodownik and Helen Czerski for an evening packed with knowledge and wonder.

Reading and Being Read: Readers, Writers, Publishers
Feb 20 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm
Reading and Being Read: Readers, Writers, Publishers @ British Library | London | United Kingdom

A symposium and workshop for hungry minds and creative readers, bringing together writers, readers and publishers from independent presses in the UK.

Susie Nott-Bower and Lynn Michell, Linen Press and Alex Pheby and Sam Jordison, Galley Beggar talk about the experience of writing and publishing new work. In the afternoon, we’ll be joined by Tony White, Piece of Paper Press, and students from the London College of Communication to collaboratively create our own independent publication.

In association with The Institute for Modern and Contemporary Culture, University of Westminster.

How Should we use Unproven Treatments During an Epidemic? w/@anetrid
Feb 21 @ 11:00 am
How Should we use Unproven Treatments During an Epidemic? w/@anetrid @ Conway Hall | London | United Kingdom

In 2013, the world began to witness an unprecedented Ebola epidemic in West Africa that is now smoldering. Ebola virus disease has a fatality rate of up to 90%, and there are no proven vaccines or targeted treatments for the disease to date. However, several interventions were in the earliest phases of testing at the beginning of this outbreak. Heated controversy quickly arose as to whether and how these unproven interventions should be used—among researchers, humanitarian health professionals, and the affected communities, but also among bioethicists.

Dr Annette Rid discusses the key points of ethical controversy and draws some important lessons for how we should use unproven vaccines and treatments during future epidemics.

Dr Annette Rid is Senior Lecturer in Bioethics and Society at the Department of Social Science, Health & Medicine at King’s College London. Trained in medicine, philosophy and bioethics in Germany, Switzerland and the US, Annette’s research interests span research ethics, clinical ethics and justice in health and health care. Annette has published widely in medical journals (e.g. Lancet, JAMA) and bioethics journals (e.g. Journal of Medical Ethics, Hastings Center Report). She has served as an advisor, among others, for the World Health Organization, the Council for International Organizations of Medical Sciences and the Swiss Ministry of Health.

Myths of the Soul – philosophic insights from ancient myths 2
Feb 22 @ 7:30 pm
Myths of the Soul - philosophic insights from ancient myths 2 @ Cecil Sharp House | London | United Kingdom

Damascius’ Seven Myths of the Soul – 2

Damascius was the last head of the Athenian Academy before it was closed by imperial edict in 529 AD: he was, therefore, the inheritor of more than one thousand years of unbroken philosophic learning. In his Commentary on Plato’s Phaedo he touches on the symbolic meaning of various myths and gave this verse as a certain explanation of the path of the soul:

The soul descends into generation, after the manner of Kore;
She is scattered by generation, after the manner of Dionysus;
Like Prometheus and the Titans, she is bound to body.
She frees herself by exercising the strength of Heracles;
Gathers herself together through the help of Apollo
And the saviour Athene, by truly purifying philosophy;
And she elevates herself to the causes of her being with Demeter.

This is the second of three meetings looking at this fascinating view of myth: In the January meeting we will have looked at the myths of Kore (Persephone) and Dionysus and in a third session (March 21) we will explore the myths of Apollo and Demeter.

In this meeting we’ll look at the myths of the titan Prometheus, Heracles (or Hercules) and Athene. We will begin with a retelling the myths, but as usual we should have the best part of an hour for a group discussion of the issues arising. (We will briefly recap on the two previous myths – so if you missed the first session in January, this one should still make sense).

No previous experience of formal philosophy is required.

Entrance in free, but donations between £3-5 will be welcomed.

A PDF download of the outline of the three myths we will be concentrating on is available on our website together with further details of this and other Prometheus Trust’s activities: www.prometheustrust.co.uk (the PDF is on the “London Monday Evenings” page.)

Courtships, Weddings & Married Life: The Magnificent Age of the Baroque
Feb 23 @ 10:45 am – 12:45 pm

The Course offers a series of art history lectures on “The Magnificent Age of the Baroque” and will focus on how people lived – their homes, their decor, their fashion, their rituals – and how this was reflected in some of the most magnificent art of the age.

In church images, the mystic wedding was an increasingly potent image but what was real life like in the marital home? Texts like Paul de Barry’s ‘Solitude of Phillagia’ emerged urging women to consider the benefits of solitude.

Darwin, Evolution and God: The Present Debates
Feb 23 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Darwin, Evolution and God: The Present Debates @ Gresham College, Barnard's Inn Hall | London | United Kingdom

This lecture sets the scientific and religious context for Darwin’s theory of evolution, before considering this theory and the challenges this raised for traditional religious beliefs. In particular, we will consider some issues raised by Richard Dawkins in his Blind Watchmaker (1986) and The God Delusion (2006). The lecture will then conclude by looking at “social Darwinism”, particularly the controversial question of eugenics. If we understand how evolution happens, can we – and should we – take control of the process?

This is a free public lecture by Alister McGrath, Gresham Professor of Divinity.

There is no need to book in advance for this lecture. It runs on a first come first served basis.

From gases to gloops: instabilities in fluids
Feb 23 @ 1:15 pm – 1:55 pm
From gases to gloops: instabilities in fluids @ Darwin Lecture Theatre, Darwin Building | London | United Kingdom

Fluid flows make up so much of our world, from the atmosphere and oceans to volcanic lava. They are also key to many biological processes, and almost everything we use goes through a fluid stage in its manufacture. Dr Helen Wilson shows how these fluid flows can become unstable and explains some of the mechanisms at work.

Brains, Bats, Star Trek & Psychopaths: The Neuropsychology of Morality w/@CarriganGlen
Feb 23 @ 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Brains, Bats, Star Trek & Psychopaths: The Neuropsychology of Morality w/@CarriganGlen @ LG01, Professor Stuart Hall Building, Goldsmiths, University of London | New Cross | United Kingdom

This is an introduction to morality where God is not at its centre. Using the 4 S’s of science, skepticism, sarcasm and satire, whilst employing neuropsychological research and a humanistic world view, we’ll look at what the alternatives are to a pious moral code, and why people and groups might make the decisions they do. We will seek to highlight that the debate about morality should not be conducted in a vacuum, but should take place in the real world and focus on understanding how our actions affect our fellow creatures, rather than desperately trying to cling to ancient ‘axiomatic’ standards and justify them with archaic scriptural tenets.

Glen is a Senior Research Assistant in Clinical Practice at The University of Central Lancashire, currently researching Stroke, Health Inequalities, and providing training opportunities in research for clinicians. He is also a Neuropsychology Postgraduate Researcher where he specialises in moral psychology, public engagement, and has taught on a variety of courses including the Msc in Emotions, Credibility and Deception. Coming from a military background, Glen’s interest in psychology and morality was piqued when living and working in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and many other nations after experiencing a myriad of world views, different group behaviours, and the strife that often results when they clash – especially where religion is concerned. It is therefore his passionate aim to usher in a more enlightened form of thinking, where equality as a species, compassion and critical thinking, help to uplift us in place of tribalism, and the wanton disregard for the scientific facts that humans have so far revealed in this beautiful and rich universe.

Glen was recently nominated for the John Maddox prize in Science Engagement, and has aided in the development of a new Brain Imaging Lab (Electroencephalogram) at UCLan. He has also contributed to Humanist Life, and is a current Journalist at Atheist Republic.com, as well as hosting his own blog. His other activities include: creating, hosting, and presenting over 30 unique academic, comedy, and public engagement events, documentaries and talks. He also founded two skeptical groups in the North West (Project Science and Reason, and UCLan Atheist, Humanist, and Secularist Society), and one cultural exchange group (UCLan Japanese Society).

In addition, Glen has taken part in political and social activism, and charity work with the BHA, AHS and other groups on campaigns such as: Sense about Science, UK Law Society and Sharia guidance, Ugandan Humanist Trust, Reform Section 5, equal marriage, no to gender segregation, and saying farewell to Sir Terry Pratchett by honouring his patronage to Alzheimer’s Research UK.