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LONDON 2014 Interactive Humanitarian Conference

Sat 4 Oct 2014, 10:00

One People, One World presents 

LONDON 2014 Interactive Humanitarian Conference

This Interactive Conference will showcase for the very first time, humanitarian individuals, groups and organisations adopting a 'unified approach' to address the urgent global humanitarian challenges that we face today.

In the face of a 'series of global humanitarian crises' (Climate Change, Food Production Concerns, War, Poverty, Rapidly Increasing Population, Ongoing Global Economic Problems, Increasing Lifestyle Costs and Stresses, Job losses due to Technology Improvements,...) - how should we as a people respond?

If we are serious about wanting to see truly 'positive change in the world', then we need to join forces and adopt a 'unified approach' to address these major global concerns.

This will be a full participation conference with 'Interactive Sessions' (on the Main Floor and Online) where your ideas and positive engagement will be encouraged and most welcome. 

PLEASE NOTE: We will be FILMING the event for future campaigns and a possible documentary. During the day, you will also have the opportunity to participate in some one-to-one video interviews if you wish. Thank You.

Seat Reservations:

FREE and Donation.

10AM – 4.30PM

Image of Stop the First World War

Special Events

Stop the First World War

Tue 7 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.

From Ivory Tower to Activist:

Persistent Dissent: Bertrand Russell's response to the War and Conscription.

Chris Bratcher

At the onset of WWI, Bertrand Russell was aged 42, an eminent don at Trinity College, Cambridge, regarded in awe for his ten years' labour on Principia. Culturally and by birth, he was a leading member of the liberal intelligentsia. His anticipation of the cataclysm started his lifelong reasoned and passionate dissent from the conventional varieties of Establishment England. The talk first covers his reasoned objections to the war and his analysis of the failures of diplomacy (and its meretricious course under Sir Edward Grey, the Liberal Foreign Secretary).

In his opposition to the war, Russell discovered new bedfellows: socialists and pacifists; and a world of censorship. His defiant championing of the No Conscription Fellowship in 1916, and his condemnation of the treatment of Conscientious Objectors, resulted in his imprisonment and the loss of his academic fellowship.

Chris Bratcher is a former Chair of Conway Hall Ethical Society, and has given talks, largely on ethical issues at Conway Hall over many years.  He has developed a special interest in Bertrand Russell arising from his academic discipline of philosophy, and from a lifelong involvement in Peace and the CND movements.

Ramsay MacDonald and World War One

John Grigg

Ramsay MacDonald resigned his leadership of the Labour Party over his opposition to the First World War allowing Arthur Henderson to take over the leadership.

The Labour Party was a federation Trades Unions, the Independent Labour Party (ILP) and the Fabians. The ILP backed MacDonald, while the TUs supported the war. The ILP did not exactly suit MacDonald, Many were pacifists which MacDonald was not and some were Marxists or near-Marxists for whom war was the inevitable product of Capitalism. MacDonald believed the matter was more complex.

John Grigg, Treasurer of Labour Heritage and a researcher into local Labour History in West London and one time Labour Leader of Hounslow Council.

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

Image of London Thinks: Shouting Back

Special Events

London Thinks: Shouting Back

Thu 9 Oct 2014, 19:30

Conway Hall Ethical Society presents

London Thinks - Shouting Back

With Laura Bates, Caroline Criado-Perez. Chaired by Samira Ahmed.

Two of the UK's finest feminist firebrands will discuss the evolution of 21st Century feminist campaigning and how to solve the problem of institutionalised sexism in society.

Caroline Criado-Perez is a freelance journalist and feminist campaigner. She is co-founder of The Women's Room, an organisation and database that campaigns for more women experts in the media, and she led the campaign to keep women on banknotes, for which she received a barrage of rape and death threats. She has a degree in English Language & Literature from Keble College, Oxford, is completing an MSc in Gender at LSE, and is currently writing a book about inspiring women around the world, called Do It Like A Woman: The New Pioneers, which will be published by Granta in 2015. Caroline was the recipient of the Liberty Human Rights Campaigner of the Year Award 2013.

Laura Bates is the founder of the award-winning Everyday Sexism Project, an ever-increasing collection of over 70,000 women's experiences of gender imbalance. The project has expanded into 18 countries worldwide and become internationally renowned, featuring in media from the New York Times to French Glamour, CNN to Grazia South Africa, Cosmopolitan to the Times of India.

Laura writes regularly for the Guardian and the Independent and her work has appeared in the Financial Times, Grazia, Red Magazine and the New Statesman among others. She works closely with MPs, police forces, schools, universities and businesses to use the data collected by Everyday Sexism to create concrete real-world change.

Laura is Contributor for Women Under Siege, a New York-based organisation working against the use of rape as a tool of war in conflict zones worldwide.

Laura was named one of the Huffington Post's 'Most inspirational women of 2012' and a Woman of the Year 2013 by Cosmopolitan and the Sunday Times. The Guardian named her as a 'Rising Star' to watch in 2014. She was named one of the 50 most influential Left-Wingers in the UK by the Telegraph and one of the 50 top tweeters to follow by the Times. She won the 'Smart Woman' award at the Red Magazine women of the year awards in 2014.

Laura is also Patron of Somerset and Avon Rape and Sexual Abuse Support, SARSAS (formerly Bristol Rape Crisis).

Laura’s first book, 'Everyday Sexism', was published by Simon and Schuster in 2014.

The event will be chaired by Samira Ahmed.

Samira 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.

She covered the OJ Simpson case as BBC Los Angeles Correspondent and was a presenter and reporter at Channel 4 News from 2000 to 2011.

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.

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

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

Complimentary wine and nibbles are available from 6.30pm.

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

Image of Climate Change: a philosophical debate

Special Events

Climate Change: a philosophical debate

Sat 11 Oct 2014, 10:30

A Day Conference and Colloquium arranged by the Philosophical Society of England  

Climate Change: should science guide politics – or politics guide science?

Anthropogenic climate change has been described as one of the most serious problems facing the 21st century, yet public debate of the issue is plagued by uncertainty. What are the likely consequences and what costs would be involved in attempting to mitigate them? Science and mathematics are needed to test the empirical claims and to consider the questions they raise about risk assessment and probability. But, alongside the natural sciences, ethics, philosophy and the social sciences also have a crucial role to play. 

10.30 a.m. Arrival and registration.

11.00 a.m. 'Cosmopolitan Ethics in the Anthropocene'
Michael Northcott, Professor of Ethics at the University of Edinburgh
Chair: Dr. Henry Tam

1 p.m. Lunch.

2 p.m. ‘Technology introductions in the context of decarbonisation: lessons from recent history’
Michael J Kelly, Professor of Technology, Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge .
Chair: Professor Brenda Almond

3.45 p.m. Tea and opportunity for informal discussion


Registration charge, including lunch and morning and afternoon tea or coffee, is £15.

Payment is required by October 1st 2014 but places can be reserved by sending a deposit of £5 to the Hon. Sec. at the address below. For conference enquiries please contact the Chair of the Society, Michael Bavidge: m.c.bavidge@newcastle.ac.uk. Cheques should be made out to ‘The Philosophical Society of England’ and sent to the Honorary Secretary of the Society Alan Brown, 9 Olney Court, Oxford OX14LZ.

Registered Charity No. 1140044.

Image of Stop the First World War

Special Events

Stop the First World War

Tue 14 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.

Week 3:

British Labour Movement and the Outbreak of the First World War

Willie Thompson

An overview of the reactions, ranging from patriotic (or resigned) support for the government, to pacifism to, revolutionary opposition. to the First World War among  all the various elements of the labour movement; the Labour Party and the Independent Labour Party,  the socialist parties and the trade unions

Prof Willie Thompson (now retired), was for thirty years lecturer and subsequently professor of contemporary history at what became Glasgow Caledonian University. He was a member of the Communist Party from 1962 until its disbandment in 1991, and author of an unofficial history of the CP, published in 1992 and entitled The Good Old Cause. He currently lives in Sunderland.

A Movement Divided, The Labour Movement and the Great War

A Case Study The West Riding of Yorkshire

Prof Keith Laybourn

The important textile district of Yorkshire including Huddersfield and Bradford divisions also had a divided response to the First Wold War, while initially there was general support for the war, the focus of the talk is on the strength, nature and tactics of the oppositional forces.

Professor Keith Laybourn B.Sc, PGCE, MA, PhD, FRHistS, FHA, FHEA is one of Britain’s most distinguished labour historians. He is Diamond Jubilee Professor at the University of Huddersfield. His publications include A History of British Trade Unionism, c.1770-1990; The Evolution of the Welfare State; Britain on the Breadline: A Social and Political History of Britain, 1918-39; The General Strike Day by Day; and A Century of Labour: A History of the Labour Party, 1900-2000.

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

Image of Stop the First World War

Special Events

Stop the First World War

Tue 21 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.

Week 4:

Irish Labour and the First World War

On 8 August 1914 Jim Larkin wrote in the Irish Worker newspaper lamenting the fact that Ireland’s ‘best blood’ was pouring out of ‘every port in Munster, Leinster and Connaught’ to fight for the British Empire. ‘Take heed of what we say’, he urged, ‘for if you do England’s dirty work you will surely rue the day. Stop at home. Arm for Ireland. Fight for Ireland.’ complained that even staunch Irish Citizen Army men were enlisting. After John Redmond’s unconditional offer of support for Britain’s declaration of war, Ireland was not exempt from the patriotic wave that swept over the British Isles, and at the Rising in Easter Week 1916 there were actually more Irish workers fighting for the British on the Western Front than there were fighting against the British in Dublin, the bulk of the Irish labour movement remained opposed to the War. From the very beginning the conflict was seen as Ireland’s opportunity and importantly the British government found it impossible to introduce conscription in Ireland.

John Newsinger is professor of History at Bath Spa University. He is a member of the Socialist History Society and the London Socialist Historians Group. He has written extensively on the labour and trade union movement in Ireland, on aspects of imperialism and the left. His many books include Fenianism in Mid-Victorian Britain (1994); United Irishman: The Memoirs of James Hope (editor) (2000); British Counterinsurgency: from Palestine to Northern Ireland (2002); Rebel City: Larkin, Connolly and the Dublin Labour Movement (2004); The Blood Never Dried: A People's History of the British Empire (2006) and Jim Larkin and the Great Dublin Lockout of 1913 (2013).

Radical Liberalism and the Outbreak of WW1

This lecture will focus on the role of working class Liberal MPs (the LibLabs) in the prewar peace and arbitration movements and on the role of the radical Liberals including Charles Trevelyan and Arthur Ponsonby), who at the outbreak of war established the British Neutrality Committee and will consider Trevelyan's resignation from the Government together with John Burns and John Morley, on the issue of the declaration of war against Germany.

Duncan Bowie, reviews editor and history columnist of Chartist and a lecturer at the University of Westminster.

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

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

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

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