Talks & Lectures

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Image of Ask For Evidence

Talks & Lectures

Ask For Evidence

Wed 16 Apr 2014, 19.00

The Central London Humanist Group presents

'Ask For Evidence' with Max Goldman

The CLHG are delighted that Max Goldman has offered to talk to us about his campaign "Ask For Evidence" We hear daily claims about what is good for our health, bad for the environment, how to improve education, cut crime, treat disease or improve agriculture. Some are based on reliable evidence and scientific rigour. Many are not. 

How can we make companies, politicians, commentators and official bodies accountable for the claims they make? If they want us to vote for them, believe them or buy their products, then we should Ask for Evidence. 

Max joined Sense About Science in March 2013, working specifically for the Ask for Evidence campaign. Prior to working with Sense About Science, Max completed a Masters of Research degree at the London Consortium, a cross-disciplinary group of museums, galleries and academic institutions designed to bridge the gap between public and academic discussion. His dissertation explored the relationship between scientific progress and the public perception of science, and it is this that got him interested in the great work that Sense About Science does. Previously to that, Max worked in an advertising agency and he also has an undergraduate degree in philosophy from the University of Oxford  

Sense About Science A charitable trust that equips people to make sense of scientific and medical claims in public discussion.With a database of over 6,000 scientists, from Nobel prize winners to postdocs and PhD students, we work in partnership with scientific bodies, research publishers, policy makers, the public and the media, to change public discussions about science and evidence. Through award-winning public campaigns, we share the tools of scientific thinking and scrutiny. Our growing international Voice of Young Science network engages hundreds of early career researchers in public debates about research and evidence. Our activities and publications are used and shaped by community groups, civic bodies, patient organisations, information services, writers, publishers, educators, health services and many others.

Doors at 6.30 pm for talk at 7.00 p.m.

Entry is Free.

A cash bar will be available on the night. Donations to the wine bar will go to Sense About Science All our talks are open and free to all. But we ask those who can to make a donation of what they can afford to cover the costs of room and equipment hire and help keep our talks free to all.


Image of Shaw and sexuality

Talks & Lectures

Shaw and sexuality

Fri 25 Apr 2014,19.30

The Shaw Society presents

“Shaw and sexuality” –  Alan Knight

Alan Knight, the chair of the Shaw Society, will look at Shaw’s discussion of sexual relations in his plays, and considers the views of critics who have detected other less explicit strains in his work.

TICKETS: On the door £2 members £4 guests


Image of Sunday Lecture - The Idea of Israel

Talks & Lectures

Sunday Lecture - The Idea of Israel

Sun 27 Apr 2014, 14.00

The Conway Hall Ethical Society presents

The Idea of Israel: Ilan Pappé

A major new history of Zionism and Israel, by Ilan Pappé, renowned author of The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine.

Since its foundation in 1948, Israel has drawn on Zionism to provide a sense of self and political direction. In this groundbreaking new work, Ilan Pappé looks at the continued role of Zionist ideology in the creation of Israel. Join him as he discusses the way Zionism operates outside of the government and military in areas such as the country’s education system, media, and cinema, and the uses that are made of the Holocaust in supporting the state’s ideological structure.

Pappé has been attacked and received death threats since his work exposed the truth about how Palestinians have been treated, and the gruesome structure that links the production of knowledge to the exercise of power. The Idea of Israel is a powerful and urgent intervention in the war of ideas concerning the past, and the future, of the Palestinian–Israeli conflict.

Doors 13.30, £5 in advance, £2 concs./Free to Ethical Society members

Tea & Coffee will be available.


Image of Sunday Lecture - The Dead Sea Scrolls: Contours of Belief

Talks & Lectures

Sunday Lecture - The Dead Sea Scrolls: Contours of Belief

Sat 27 Apr 2014, 11.00

The Conway Hall Ethical Society presents

Sunday Lecture - The Dead Sea Scrolls: Contours of Belief
Professor Philip Davies

The Dead Sea Scrolls, discovered in Palestine in 1947, are the only literary texts we have in Hebrew from the first century CE, when the sacrificial cult of Judaism ended, and different forms of Judaism took over, including the new religion of Judaism. The Scrolls contain texts of scripture and scriptural interpretation, as well as rules for sectarian communities. Of particular importance is the range of religious ideas that they betray, suggesting that the spectrum of beliefs at the time was much broader than was previously thought, and contains the seeds not only of orthodox forms of Christianity and Judaism, but of several strands of belief that lay on their fringes or were even hereticized. We still know very little for sure about the groups responsible for these scrolls, or their history. But we can use them to redraw the prehistory of Western (including Islamic) monotheism and its central problem, the origin and nature of evil. 

Philip R. Davies is Professor emeritus of biblical studies at the University of Sheffield. He was the Director for the Centre for the Study of the Dead Sea Scrolls. He is the author of numerous books and articles on ancient Israelite history and religion, including Scribes and Schools (1998) in the Library of Ancient Israel. He is an expert on the Dead Sea Scrolls, and has written four books on the subject.

Doors 10.30, £5 in advance, £2 concs./Free to Ethical Society members

Tea & Coffee will be available.


Image of Sunday Lecture - The Ethics of Liberation Wars

Talks & Lectures

Sunday Lecture - The Ethics of Liberation Wars

Sun 18 May 2014, 11.00

Largely due to European colonisation and its aftermath, Africa is today the least developed, most marginalised and most misunderstood continent. As free peoples, Africans are increasingly redressing this situation. In this talk Dan Thea aims to make a contribution to raising awareness of this problem worldwide, and making a call for the necessary correction.

The talk will illustrate the justice of, and the will to conduct wars of liberation with particular reference to the Kenyan Mau Mau War, 1952-61; the Algerian National Liberation War, 1954-62, the Angolan Liberation war, the ANC war against Apartheid and the special case of the war for the secession of South Sudan from the Sudan.
The talk will, of course, also acknowledge the internationalist support given by the USSR, the (then) Eastern European socialist states and by Cuba.

Dan Thea was born in colonial Kenya and attended university in Britain. After a brief period of work in private sector his main career is now in local government.

A life-long trade unionist, prominent in equality campaigns; including contributing in the content of the Race Relations Act, an activist in equality struggles, and an initiator of equality monitoring in Britain. He has decades of experience in the Anti-Apartheid Movement, and also writes monthly articles for the Chartist and the Liberation Journal. He is a patron of Mau Mau Justice Network.

Thea last spoke at Conway Hall in his capacity as the Deputy Chair of the Anti-Apartheid Movement; and acknowledges Conway Hall’s contribution to that historic struggle. Africa continues to need your support. 

Door 10.30, £5 in advance, £2 concs./Free to Ethical Society members

Tea & Coffee will be available.


Image of Sunday Sermon: Mary Anne Hobbs on Love & Loyalty

Talks & Lectures

Sunday Sermon: Mary Anne Hobbs on Love & Loyalty

Sun 22 Jun 2014, 11.15

The School of Life presents

Sunday Sermon: Mary Anne Hobbs on Love & Loyalty

Growing up in an isolated hamlet in Lancashire, in a house where music was banned by her father has lead Mary Anne to have a profound relationship with music and an extraordinary loyalty to her work. Listening to John Peel under her duvet and secreting away her 7” records for fear of her father smashing them up; this act of dedication to music, in the face of adversity, has led to her deep commitment to her career. But can work really replace family?

Many people are not part of a ‘conventional’ family and the numbers of people living alone in the UK are increasing. So where can we look to find the love and loyalty that we all need if our families are maybe far away or problematic? In this sermon Mary Anne will be leading us through the passions that have driven her to have the colourful life she has lead and what she has learnt along the way about what ‘family’ means to her.

Expect to hear stories of her remarkable adventures along with ideas she has never spoken about publicly before.

Mary Anne Hobbs hosts the Weekend Breakfast Show on BBC 6 Music and is probably best known for her 14-year career at BBC Radio1 hosting the Breezeblock, the Rock Show and BBC Radio1 Experimental. She worked on sound design for Darren Aronofsky and Clint Mansell on their Oscar winning film ‘Black Swan’ and the soundtrack was nominated for a Grammy. Less well known is her work as a mentor and speaker on the topic of passion and the power of music.

Tickets: £15


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