Join us for a discussion with David Wood, Indra Adnan and Dr Lina Dencik about whether the age of big data and artificial intelligence will mean the demise of democracy as decisions are taken over by the algorithms of these techniques.
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Talks, Debates & Lectures taking place at Conway Hall
Thomas Jefferson once observed that “information is the currency of democracy.” If this is right, what happens when that currency is corrupted by bad information — alternative facts, fake news, conspiracy theories and pseudo-science? This is the question that Mike Flood will pose in this talk.
Cathi Unsworth interweaves the true stories of the Hagley Woods mystery of 1943 and the trial of Helen Duncan, the last woman to be prosecuted for witchcraft in the UK, in 1944.
Journalist, broadcaster and eco lifestyle expert Lucy Siegle provides a powerful call to arms to end the plastic pandemic along with the tools we need to make decisive change. It is a clear-eyed, authoritative and accessible guide to help us to take decisive and effective personal action.
From a cyber-crime raid in suburbia to the engine rooms of Silicon Valley, and from the digital soldiers of Berkshire to the hackers of Las Vegas, pioneering technology researcher Carl Miller traces how power – the most important currency of all – is being transformed, fought over, won and lost.
Becoming White Elk: The Bizarre Adventures of the Jazz Age’s Greatest Imposter | Monday 3rd September
The spellbinding tale of hustler Edgar Laplante—the king of Jazz Age con artists—who becomes Chief White Elk the war hero, sports star, civil rights campaigner, Cherokee nation leader—and total fraud. Paul Willetts brings this previously untold story to life in all its surprising absurdity.
A series of Wednesday evening talks starting on 5th September running until 10th October. Featuring Dr Stacy Banwell, Dr Kevin Brown, Dr Jane Jordan, Dr Julia Laite, Dr Siobhán Hearne and Prof Roger Matthews.
Presented by Conway Hall Ethical Society and curated by Deborah Lavin.
What would life on earth look like in 50 million years; long after the extinction of humanity? Join Dougal Dixon, palaeontologist, geologist and author, in conversation with vertebrate palaeontologist and science writer Darren Naish to mark the return of Dixon’s astonishing speculative-evolution book ‘After Man: A Zoology of the Future’.
From the moment syphilis appeared in Europe at the end of the 15th century and its direct connection to sex was worked out, prostitutes were blamed while male clients were viewed as hapless victims. Kevin Brown will discuss how gendered attitudes informed the health debate around syphilis from 1495-1945.
In this talk celebrating the 150th anniversary of Chapman Cohen’s birth, Bob Forder will outline Cohen’s fascinating career and provide an insight into his work.
Thinking on Sunday: The Pink Pound – Do Homosexuality and Capitalism have a History? | Sunday 16th September
There has been a long and vibrant relationship between LGBTQ people, homosexuality and consumer capitalism since the late nineteenth. Using sources ranging through early men’s magazines and erotic publications, government documents, business archives and oral histories, Justin Bengry asks who benefited from commercial interest in homosexuality?
Josephine Butler and the “Ladies Campaign” against the Contagious Diseases Acts | Wednesday 19th September
Blaming prostitutes for venereal disease in the military, the Liberal government decided on a gendered policy of incarcerating infected prostitutes, while letting their infected male clients remain free. This talk, by Dr Jane Jordan, demonstrates how the feminist Josephine Butler and her Ladies demanded a rethink.