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Talks, Debates & Lectures taking place at Conway Hall

October 2018

5×15 Fright Night: An evening of Halloween tales curated by Sarah Perry, the bestselling author of the new gothic masterpiece Melmoth. Do not be afraid! Dare to join us for gothic tales, Halloween hijinks, stories of spectres and encounters with the other side.

The First Resort- Pamphleteering and Politics in Early Modern Britain

Prof Joad Raymond discusses how dreamers of a better world used pamphleteering to communicate alternative political ideas and challenge power in early modern Britain.

A series of six Wednesday evening talks on pamphleteering, contemporary blogging and some of the myriad issues covered in Conway Hall’s largely 19th century pamphlet collection, curated by Deborah Lavin, featuring Prof Joad Raymond, Dr Joseph Kelly, Dr Gregory Claeys, Prof David Nash, Viv Regan and Deborah Lavin.

Nobel Laureate Sir Paul Nurse will consider the aims of scientific research in the light of global challenges and political agendas. Stressing the importance of mature and informed discussions, he will survey the characteristics research systems need if they are to produce reliable, useful knowledge in the public interest.

November 2018

1968 was a year of political upheaval and rebellion, but those times were also important in culture and education – and not just in rock music! This event celebrates those times and asks, what is the legacy? Chaired by Michael Rosen, with speakers including Tariq Ali, Melissa Benn, Ken Loach and Professor Lynne Segal.

The Elimination of Slavery from the Whole World- Problems of Anti-Slavery in Victorian Britain

Dr Joseph Kelly examines the problems faced by the slavery abolition movement in Britain after the 1830s in their efforts to eliminate slavery from the face of the Earth.

Marx, Morris and Utopia

Dr Gregory Claeys considers whether, despite Marxism’s well know rejection of earlier Utopian socialism, Karl Marx might be termed a Utopian thinker, and how some of his ideas were adapted but also built upon by the English socialist William Morris.

Join Richard MacLean Smith, creator of the ‘world’s spookiest podcast’ Unexplained as he takes you on an atmospheric journey through the extraordinary tale of the Hexham Heads. The heads seem to move themselves and strange creatures were witnessed stalking the homes of anybody that housed the bizarre artefacts.

Burnout and other associated health issues are gathering extraordinary momentum particularly with frontline employees. Why do we do this highly pressurised, persistently demanding work which requires enormous breadth and depth of skill and who is responsible for our wellbeing? Camilla Ghazala will discuss whether we can really avoid burnout.

Prof David Nash traces the long battle to abolish the Blasphemy Laws in England, from the seventeenth century to their abolition in 2008 and how the concept of blasphemy affects us all today.

Karen Douglas will discuss why conspiracy theories are popular, who is more likely to believe them (and why), and what some of the potential consequences of conspiracy theories are for politics, health, and the environment.

The story of birth control is usually told as one of almost linear progress against blinkered bigotry. Deborah Lavin reveals how opposition to contraception may have been blinkered and bigoted, but it was also often liberal, radical, socialist and feminist.

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