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Image of New Scientist Live - Closing in on consciousness

Special Events

New Scientist Live - Closing in on consciousness

Wed 22 Oct 2014, 18:30


New Scientist Magazine presents

New Scientist Live - Closing in on consciousness

Anil Seth, Professor of Cognitive and Computational Neuroscience, University of Sussex

Manos Tsakiris, Professor of Psychology, Royal Holloway, London University

Every day you sense the world around you and react to it. You think about it, plan ahead and have no doubt where "you" end and everything else begins. Your consciousness is so familiar you take it for granted, yet it is deeply mysterious and has intrigued philospohers and scientists for centuries. Recent research has revealed much about the subtleties of this state and what we still need to uncover.

Doors to Conway Hall will open at 6pm, the talk will commence at 6:30pm.

Tickets £14/£12

Tickets will only be available in advance through Eventbrite (subject to availability).

Image of The Unbelievers

Film & Theatre

The Unbelievers

Thu 23 Oct 2014, 18:00

The Skeptic Magazine presents

The Unbelievers: an evening with Richard Dawkins & Lawrence Krauss

SOLD OUT: Please contact The Skeptic Magazine for details of waitlist and returns.

Richard Dawkins and Lawrence Krauss live at Conway Hall, to discuss their recent documentary and the state of science and reason in modern times.

The Unbelievers documentary follows Richard Dawkins and Lawrence Krauss as they speak publicly around the world. It includes interviews with Stephen Hawking, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Sam Harris, Cameron Diaz, Woody Allen and many others.

Watch the documentary, then join the Q & A with Dawkins and Krauss at the event. If you want to take the DVD home, it'll be available to buy and get signed.

6-6.30 Drinks available

6.30 Documentary starts

7.45 - 8.15 Interval

8.15-9.15 Q & A with Prof. Richard Dawkins and Prof. Lawrence Krauss

9.15-10 DVD signing

Limited tickets available.

Standard £14.95, Concessions £9.95.

Image of Stop the First World War

Special Events

Stop the First World War

Tue 28 Oct 2014, 19.00

Oppositions to the Great War

A series of talks and discussions every Tuesday evening at 7pm from September 30th to November 11th 2014.

Curated by Deborah Lavin, and presented by Conway Hall Ethical Society and the Socialist History Society.

The Pankhursts at War

Katherine Connelly

The outbreak of the First World War fiercely divided the militant suffragette movement in Britain and its campaigning family: the Pankhursts. The followers of Emmeline Pankhurst suspended their campaign for the vote and called on women to support the war effort, hoping that their patriotism would be rewarded with votes for women. Meanwhile her rebellious daughter Sylvia Pankhurst and her organisation of working-class suffragettes campaigned against the war they saw pursued by Europe’s powerful elites at the expense of ordinary people, and threw their support behind the Russian Revolution. Katherine Connelly will examine why the war divided the suffragettes and how it impacted on the struggle for democracy and women’s liberation

Katherine Connelly is a historian, political activist and campaigner who has written and spoken widely about the militant Suffragettes and on women’s history more generally. She is the author of the book ‘Sylvia Pankhurst: Suffragette, Socialist and Scourge of Empire’ which appeared in the Revolutionary Lives series published by Pluto Press, 2013. Last year she co-ordinated the Emily Wilding Davison Memorial Campaign. Katherine is currently finishing off her doctoral thesis in history at Queen Mary, University of London.

Isabella Ford; a socialist and feminist peace campaigner in World War One

Professor June Hannam

Isabella Ford's peace activism centred on the Women's International League (WIL) at both a national and at a local level- in Leeds where she a established a WIL branch, while helping to build the peace movement from the grassroots, Isabella also made links between the WIL and the Union of Democratic Control, the Women's Peace Crusade, the socialist Independent Labour Party and other groups working for peace. Through this focus on one woman's peace activism the complex interrelationship and tensions between socialist and feminist peace campaigning - both in theory and practice - are explored.

June Hannam, Professor (Emerita) of Modern British History, University of the West of England. June has published widely on socialist and feminist politics in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Publications include Isabella Ford, 1855-1924 (1989); Feminism (2010); with Karen Hunt, Socialist Women . Britain 1880s-1920s (2002); June is chair of the West of England and South Wales Women's History Network and is convenor of the National WHN Book Prize. She is a member of the Editorial Board of Women's History Review, Labour History Review and LLafur.

Entry £5/£3 (Ethical Society and Social History Society members)

Image of Mainstreaming Psychedelics

Special Events

Mainstreaming Psychedelics

Mon 3 Nov 2014, 18:30

The Psychedelic Society presents

Mainstreaming Psychedelics

Psychedelic drugs have fascinated and delighted humans for thousands of years. Studies indicate that they can leave people calmer, happier, kinder and more open-minded, and they are being investigated as a treatment for a range of psychiatric illnesses. Although the authorities continue to attempt to prevent their use, there are signs that the time may be right to push for their legalisation. At this event, we will investigate the benefits of psychedelics, the arguments for legalisation and ask: how can we mainstream psychedelics? What are our strongest arguments, and the current political opportunities? Can we learn from other liberation movements? What's our vision of a 'psychedelic society'?

Short thoughtpieces from:

Prof David Nutt (Prof of Neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College London and Chair of DrugScience) on the latest science of psychedelics.

David Babbs(Executive Director of 38 Degrees) on lessons learned from other liberation campaigns.

Arielle Nylander (Welfare Enough festival support) on the conditions for a thriving psychedelic society.

Followed by audience Q&A

Doors 6.15pm for 6.30pm

Tickets £5

We don't want to exclude anyone on the basis of cost. If you'd like to attend but have difficulty paying, please contact enquiries@psychedelicsociety.org.uk

Image of 5x15 presents Atul Gawande and Will Self

Talks & Lectures

5x15 presents Atul Gawande and Will Self

Tue 4 Nov 2014, 19:00

5x15 presents

Being Mortal: Atul Gawande and Will Self in conversation

To mark the publication of Atul Gawande’s new book Being Mortal from the Wellcome Collection, join 5x15 for a discussion on the inescapable realities of aging and death. Surgeon and author Gawande is this year’s Reith Lecturer and the best selling author of  The Checklist Manifesto, Better and Complications. He will be in conversation with the brilliantly inventive journalist and author Will Self.

Gawande examines his experiences as a surgeon, as he confronts the realities of aging and dying in his patients and in his family, as well as the limits of what he can do. Riveting, honest, and humane, Being Mortal shows that the ultimate goal is not a good death but a good life – all the way to the very end.

Tickets: £15/ £12

Image of Pro Corda - Gala Concert

Special Events

Pro Corda - Gala Concert

Sat 8 Nov 2014, 19:30

Pro Corda International Ensemble Training presents

Gala Concert

Pro Corda’s acclaimed series of chamber music courses have offered the highest standards in chamber music coaching for 45 years. Come and join us on November 8th for a stunning evening gala concert which will be given by students aged 7 to 18 who will perform wonderful chamber music with their own youthful and inspirational talent.

Pro Corda Trust is a music and educational charity established in 1969 founded by Pamela Spofforth MBE and Elizabeth Hewlins MBE and its purpose is ‘to provide for and conduct the education of young persons and others in the whole art, philosophy and theory of music, particularly chamber music’.

Pro Corda is the largest music organisation of its kind and is recognized as the UK’s centre of excellence for ensemble training.Pro Corda is the only youth music organisation in the UK providing a continuous and progressive programme of education through the medium of chamber music and ensemble training from age 5 to 24.  Based at Leiston Abbey, Pro Corda offers national provision and opportunities across the country.  All Pro Corda courses employ leading international artists and musicians at the forefront of their fields.

In addition to “core” courses for talented young musicians, accessible only through audition, Pro Corda has pioneered an innovative life-changing course for children with Special Educational Needs, using the power of ensemble training to benefit personal and social progression. This programme serves SEN schools and units across the country.

Pro Corda’s work employs a holistic approach and is based on the core principles of ensemble training the person and his/her social interaction as well as the musician. Our central mission is to unleash the wider  social benefits of chamber music in terms of participation, access and learning.

Tickets: £12, £8 Concessions/Child

Starts and Ends: 7.30pm – 10.30pm

Image of Stop the First World War

Talks & Lectures

Stop the First World War

Tue 11 Nov 2014, 19:00

Oppositions to the Great War

A series of talks and discussions every Tuesday evening at 7pm from September 30th to November 11th 2014.

Curated by Deborah Lavin, and presented by Conway Hall Ethical Society and the Socialist History Society.

From Slaughter to Mutiny

Ian Birchall

As the war continued more and more workers in uniform began to revolt against the authorities sending them to needless deaths. In 1917 half a million French soldiers were involved in mutinies. In 1918 mutinies by German soldiers and sailors helped to bring the war to an end. And in 1919 a French naval mutiny in the Black Sea obstructed intervention against the Russian Revolution.

Ian Birchall is a British Marxist historian and translator, former senior lecturer in French at Middlesex University.. His research interests include the Cominterm, the International Working Class, communism and Trotskyism, France an Syndicalism. He is on the editorial board of Revolutionary History, a member of the London Socialist Historians Group and has just completed a biography of Tony Cliff.

Entry £5/£3 (Ethical Society and Social History Society members)

Image of London Thinks: Nate Phelps - Leaving Hate Behind


London Thinks: Nate Phelps - Leaving Hate Behind

Thu 13 Nov 2014, 19:30

Conway Hall Ethical Society presents

London Thinks - Nate Phelps: Leaving Hate Behind

Join us for a very special evening in which we hear from Nate Phelps, in an incredibly moving talk on the Westboro Baptist Church, the childhood he spent growing up in, and how he came to leave his family behind at the stroke of midnight on his 18th birthday.

Nate Phelps is son of the late Fred Phelps, founder and patriarch of the Westboro Baptist Church – “the most hated family in America”.

Nate is Executive Director of the Centre for Inquiry Calgary. A vocal LGBT advocate, he speaks out against the dangers of religion and child abuse, and serves on the board of directors for Recovering from Religion.

The lecture will be chaired by Samira Ahmed.

Samira is an award-winning journalist with 20 years' experience in print and broadcast.
She began her career as a BBC News Trainee in the 90s and has worked as a News Correspondent and a reporter on the Today programme and Newsnight, where she was one of the first broadcast journalists to investigate the rise of Islamic radicalism on British university campuses in the early 1990s. 

Samira won the Stonewall Broadcast of the Year Award in 2009 for her film on so-called "corrective" rape in South Africa, and made the acclaimed Channel 4 documentary series Islam Unveiled. Samira has also worked as a news anchor for BBC World and for Deutsche Welle TV in Berlin, and writes regularly for newspapers and magazines including The Guardian, The Independent and The Big Issue. She is a Visiting Professor of Journalism at Kingston University.

Tickets: £15 Standard Advance. £5 Conway Hall Ethical Society Members. Please book your tickets using the Eventbrite booking link below.

Doors & Reception: 18:30. Start: 19:30. Ends: 21:30

London Thinks is Conway Hall Ethical Society's monthly discourse on the big issues and problems of society in our age.

Image of New Scientist Live - How the universe began

Special Events

New Scientist Live - How the universe began

Wed 19 Nov 2014, 18:30

New Scientist Magazine presents

New Scientist Live - How the universe began

Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal, Emeritus Professor of Cosmology and Astrophysics, University of Cambridge

A second speaker to be confirmed

Fifty years ago, two scientists in the US discovered a microwave signal that seemed to emanate from everywhere in the universe. Today it's better known as the cosmic microwave background - the afterglow of the big bang. Earlier this year we found that this signal also bears the scars of gravitational waves, the squeezing and stretching of space time itself. All this has enabled us to build an increasingly detailed picture of the birth of the universe.

Doors to Conway Hall will open at 6pm, the talk will commence at 6:30pm.

Tickets £14/£12

Tickets will only be available in advance through Eventbrite (subject to availability).

Image of South London Women Artists Symposium

Special Events

South London Women Artists Symposium

20 November 2014

South London Women Artists Collaborative are proud to announce an Arts Council England funded Symposium at Conway Hall Holborn, London, on the subject of the archaeology of mind and memory. 

A chaired panel of 3 speakers will expand and explore abstract notions around being, knowing, identity, time and space, giving a major contribution on the contemporary discourse of these enduring questions. The evening will also include stand-up poetry and performances followed by a drinks reception.

This Symposium coincides with South London Women Artists Collaborative residency and site-specific exhibition at Conway Hall - Finders Keepers Losers Weepers (4 November 2014 to 28 February 2015), an exhibition that is prompted by the creative and independent thought and free speech behind the Conway Hall Ethical Society, 1787 to date. Finders Keepers Losers Weepers is a school-ground chant and is an English adage with the premise that when something is unowned or abandoned, whoever finds it can claim it. Taking the artwork as a starting point, this panel of 4 prominent female experts in the fields of art, philosophy and science will discuss the rhyme and explore the broader issues of mind, memory, possession and loss.

Chaired by Professor Rebecca Fortnum, School of Art & Design, Visual Arts, Middlesex University.

Margaret CarlyleSSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of History & Philosophy of Science, University of Cambridge Professor Tina Chanter, Head of School, HumanitiesFaculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Kingston University. Jessica Voorsanger, Senior Lecturer Sculpture, School of Fine Art, UCA University of the Creative Arts.

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