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Ethical Record Articles

The journal began in 1895 and is produced on an monthly basis. Primarily it has provided abstracts and edited essays of the Society’s Sunday Lectures. It has developed into a showcase journal of the Society’s activities and events at Conway Hall.

A Dreadful Discovery: Big Data Proves Wallace and Darwin Counterfeit Discoverers

Few outside of expert circles in the history of scientific discovery know that – contrary to what is written in thousands of textbooks and scientific papers – neither Darwin nor Wallace were first to discover the theory of natural selection. Patrick Matthew is acknowledged by experts in the field as the first to discover the […]

Why I am not a Believer

To start with a confession, ‘Elliot George’ is my pen name. I am a retired science teacher who writes books and I don’t want my anti-religious books mixed up with my other books – it might damage sales! In April 2014, I debated an evangelical pastor in his own church. Church people are usually good […]

Obituary: John Rayner (1929 – 2014)

John Rayner (1929 – 2014) Marina Ingham writes: There was a fairly good attendance at John’s funeral at the Ruislip crematorium on the 12th June, his own birthday: they were mainly friends and members of the Harrow Humanist group, as well as the Conway Hall Ethical Society, and his own family (his niece Julia and […]

Obituary: Mary Lincé (1915 – 2014)

OBITUARIES Mary Lincé (15 March 1915 – 26 March 2014) David Morris writes: Mary Lincé was a valued and long standing member of this Society. Chamber music was an important part of her life and she played a significant role in the concerts’ history, as did her husband Martin. It is unlikely that anyone else […]

Book Review: A Short History Of Humanism

In this short book of 50 pages, John Severs brings together a wide range of subversive writers, from ancient times to Richard Dawkins, who dared to question religious (mostly Christian) doctrines and put forward alternative views, in some cases paying for it with their lives. Some of them are little known (to this reviewer at […]

Book Review: Eleanor Marx – A Life

Biographies can transform the retelling of history and produce a romanticised and possibly distorted narrative. Eleanor Marx is one of those iconic figures who attracts biographies, well, because of her iconic status. Few of them contain new material and there is in fact little to add to Yvonne Kapp’s definitive two volume of the 70s […]

Classic Liberal-Individualism and the Contemporary Western World

Firstly, what exactly is classic liberal individualism? I will begin by answering this question, placing the points in historical context. I will then identify what I regard as the defining features of the contemporary Western world. Finally, I will examine the place in that world which I think still remains for the kind of individualism […]

The origin of World War One: hidden history and lessons for today

The causes of the First World War are usually ascribed to a terrible accident of alliances colliding with Balkan intrigues and ancient hatreds or German ambitions that got out of hand. A recent controversial book, Hidden History: the secret origins of the First World War (Mainstream Publishing) by researchers Gerry Docherty and Jim McGregor published […]

A New Dawn in Secondary Education

Our present education system is a catastrophic failure, not fit for purpose and its ethos is deeply flawed. I will present a new and radical approach to secondary education, designed to be engaging and fulfilling and to enhance the student’s contribution and experience in society. The teacher’s role is redefined and their interaction with the […]

Thinking on Sunday – ‘Nothing to be frightened of’

Chris Bratcher My talk is a sampling of novelist Julian Barnes’ touching and very personal memoir of his experiences of death in the family, and the demise of the famous and obscure in literature and life, plus his own fears and ruminations on his own, entitled ‘Nothing to be Frightened of’, published in 2008 (available in […]

Is UKIP Ethical?

Any issue about the ethical standing of a political party must involve two questions: 1) Does the party tell the truth? 2) More especially, does it tell the truth about the groups and interest it really represents? In the case of UKIP, the answer to both these questions is emphatically ‘no’. UKIP claims to be […]

Thinking on Sunday – Climate Change – the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth

“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” Albert Einstein   Global anthropogenic CO2 emissions continue their inexorable rise. The science shows that there is the increasing likelihood that the world is heading towards an environmental and humanitarian catastrophe. Yet despite the multitude of research papers, articles, […]

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