Welcome to the Skeptics in the Pub, Nottingham

For the promotion of science, reason and critical thinking

We get together on a monthly basis to have a relaxed, enjoyable and social evening while listening to talks given on a wide range of topics. 

Subscribe to the events mailing listhttp://eepurl.com/dvKljT (Ignore the form on the right of this page).

The events are free, though we do ask for a £3 donation to cover the speakers expenses and other costs.

All upcoming events are listed below and on the right of this page.

Our venue is the first floor function room of the Canalhouse pub.

Who can attend? 

The meetings are open to all, whatever your beliefs and views, so please come along. We are a friendly bunch and everyone is welcome.

As the Canalhouse room is a private function room, under 18s are allowed to attend our events. However, under 18s must be accompanied by an adult when in the public downstairs bar.

Disabled access

The Canalhouse has a service lift which we can used to provide disabled access to the first floor function room. There is also a disabled toilet on the same floor.

Please let us know if you're coming to an event and require disabled access. We will make arrangements with the bar staff to bring you to the function room.

Keep in touch

To hear about upcoming events, subscribe to the mailing list here: http://eepurl.com/dvKljT (Ignore the form on the right of this page).

You can like the Nottingham Skeptics Facebook page here.

We are also on Google+.

Follow @Notts_Skeptics to keep up to date on up coming meetings and other information.

 

The Rise of Flat Earth Belief

Michael Marshall

When?
Thursday, January 9 2020 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Michael Marshall

What's the talk about?

In 2013, when Michael Marshall first interviewed the Vice President of the Flat Earth society for his show Be Reasonable, people could scarcely believe that anyone could genuinely think the Earth was flat. Five years later, Flat Earth belief has gone mainstream, spawning thousands of hours of YouTube videos, gaining widespread international media coverage, and attracting countless followers. How did we get here?

In this talk, Marshall will talk through his experiences of the Flat Earth movement, take a look at the leaders and some of their reasoning, and report back from the weekend he spent at the UK’s first ever Flat Earth convention.

Michael Marshall is the Project Director of the Good Thinking Society and the Vice President of the Merseyside Skeptics Society. He regularly speaks with proponents of pseudoscience for the Be Reasonable podcast.

His work has seen him organising international homeopathy protests, going undercover to expose psychics and quack medics, and co-founding the popular QED conference. He has written for the Guardian, The Times and New Statesman.

Chris French

When?
Tuesday, February 4 2020 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Chris French

What's the talk about?

Opinion polls repeatedly show relatively high levels of belief in ghosts even in modern Western societies. Furthermore, a sizeable minority of the population claim to have personally encountered a ghost. This talk will consider a number of factors that may lead people to claim that they have experienced a ghost even though they may not in fact have done so. Topics covered will include hoaxes, sincere misinterpretation of natural phenomena, hallucinatory experiences and pareidolia (seeing things that are not there), the fallibility of eyewitness testimony, the possible role of complex electromagnetic fields and infrasound, photographic evidence, EVP, and the role of the media.

Professor Christopher French is a British psychologist specialising in the psychology of paranormal beliefs and experiences, cognition and emotion. He is the head of the University of London's Anomalistic psychology research unit and appears regularly in the media as an expert on testing paranormal claim.

 

Dr Caroline Ward

When?
Tuesday, March 3 2020 at 7:00PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Dr Caroline Ward

What's the talk about?

Conservation can be magical. Literally. And this complicates things. That is why protesters in Iceland will blockade road building projects which threaten the habitat of the endemic Icelandic elf. And why in some parts of Ethiopia people will protect Hyenas because they eat evil spirits. And why Caribbean owls are endangered because people persecute them because they are witches. 

Dr Caroline Ward of the University of Leeds will explore how beliefs in magic can endanger but also protect species, with important real world impacts. She'll show how this produces complex ethical and practical dilemmas for conservation, and talk about solutions.

 

Sean Slater

When?
Tuesday, April 7 2020 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Sean Slater

What's the talk about?

5th generation mobile networks are coming in for increasing criticism by otherwise reputable sources and commentators. Its been demonised as mind-control, as using ‘untested, weapons-grade, ultra-high frequency technology’ and to cause severe harm to the population just by existing. Is it a back-door for governments to manage their population through technology? Are we simply leaving ourselves open to overseas countries to infiltrate our national infrastructure? Are there real dangers to this new technology? Sean Slater will try and address these fears head on and create some clarity around what 5G is and what it is not.

Sean has worked in the mobile phone business for over 25 years and has seen 2G, 3G, 4G and now 5G being rolled out by several different networks. He is also the vice-chair of Edinburgh Skeptics and as such has taken an interest in the pseudoscience surrounding his industry.

Twitter - @TheTrueScotsman

Preethi Premkumar

When?
Tuesday, May 5 2020 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Preethi Premkumar

What's the talk about?

Schizotypy is a personality trait that denotes psychosis-like experiences in the public. It includes magical beliefs and paranormal experiences. It also includes social anhedonia (inability to feel pleasure in normally pleasurable activities) and social anxiety.

People with schizotypy have reduced cortisol secretion following social stress. In this talk, Preethi will share findings about this biological connection to social stress that suggests a relation of schizotypy to physiological arousal from social stress. Fresh evidence about the neural response to criticism and praise in schizotypy will further strengthen the social vulnerability model of psychosis.
 

Preethi Premkumar is a Lecturer/Senior Lecturer in the School of Social Sciences at Nottingham Trent University.
Her research interests are to study the risk factors for psychosis due to social anxiety and poor family communication using neuroimaging.

Kate Davison

When?
Tuesday, June 2 2020 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Kate Davison

What's the talk about?

What can historians learn from old jokes? They might not be the most obvious subject of academic inquiry, but in recent years the history of humour has become a vibrant field of research. If you take Aristotle’s word for it, laughter is fundamental to human experience - people have always laughed; yet, the things we think it acceptable to laugh at, and how that laughter is thought about, tolerated or suppressed, have varied considerably with time, place and culture. This has compelling possibilities for historians. The talk will use the example of eighteenth-century Britain - a period brimming with bawdy jest books and a surfeit of satirical texts and images - to consider what the laughter of the past can tell us about the sensibilities, values and interests of those who lived through it.

Kate Davison has been a lecturer in the History Department at the University of Sheffield since 2017; before that she taught at the University of Oxford, and carried out her own research and study at the universities of Cambridge, Exeter and Sheffield. Her work focuses in particular on Britain c.1650-1800 and this talk will draw on material from the book she is currently working on.

Ariane Sherine

When?
Tuesday, December 1 2020 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Ariane Sherine

What's the talk about?

Fancy finding out how to live a long and healthy life? Look no further. Comedy writer and Atheist Bus Campaign creator Ariane Sherine has teamed up with public health consultant David Conrad to analyse the
scientific evidence behind 100 different factors that affect life expectancy. Could drinking green tea really prolong your life? How about gardening? Is regular sex more about pleasure than health? Why does standing up a lot make a difference to longevity? And is it worth cutting out red meat or even turning vegan in order to blow out 100 candles on your birthday cake?
This funny and potentially lifesaving talk will reveal the answers to all these questions and more.
Ariane will be signing copies of her new book HOW TO LIVE TO 100 after the talk.

ARIANE SHERINE
Ariane Sherine is the comedy writer and journalist who created the Atheist Bus Campaign, as well as the bestselling celebrity anthology The Atheist’s Guide to Christmas. She has written for BBC1’s My Family, Channel 4’s Countdown and BBC2’s Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, as well as for The Guardian, The Sunday Times, The Independent, The Independent on Sunday, The Observer, The Daily Mash, New Statesman and New Humanist. She lives in London with her eight-year-old daughter Lily.

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