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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?

POSTPONED FOR OBVIOUS REASONS!

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.

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?

POSTPONED FOR OBVIOUS REASONS!
 
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.

Sean Slater

When?
Tuesday, April 7 2020 at 12:00AM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Sean Slater

What's the talk about?

In light of what is happening with COVID-19 outbreak in the UK. Andy and Kash in consultation with the speaker have decided to cancel Aprils talk and to reschedule at another time. We will keep you informed on the status of the May event.

 

 

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

Dr Callum Cooper

When?
Tuesday, March 3 2020 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Dr Callum Cooper

What's the talk about?

 In the early works of the Society for Psychical Research (est. 1882), it was found that experiences of ghosts and apparitions immediately following the death of a person were highly common experiences. By the 1970s, medical research had begun to acknowledge such experiences for the bereaved, which had a wide reaching impact on medical research and thanatology. Contrary to some popularly held beliefs, these After Death Communications (ADCs) have been found to be highly beneficial to the bereavement process and are almost exclusively experienced by the bereaved. However, those who have not suffered personal loss also report spontaneous experiences of the dead, and some people even seek out these experiences via sittings with spiritualist mediums, for example. But for what reasons? This presentation shall discuss the history, phenomenology, and impact of these experiences and where we find ourselves in the current research.

Dr Callum E. Cooper is a lecturer and researcher of psychology at the University of Northampton. He is the third year module co-ordinator for ‘Parapsychology & Anomalous Experiences’ and lectures on such topics as: parapsychology, positive psychology, sexual behaviour, and death and loss. Recipient of numerous awards, he holds the 2009 Eileen J. Garrett Scholarship Award (Parapsychology Foundation), the 2014 Dr Gertrude Schmeidler Award (Parapsychological Association), and was a nominee for the 2018 Ockham’s Razor Award for Excellence in Skeptical Activism (The Skeptic Magazine / QEDcon).

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.

 

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.

Claire Benson

When?
Tuesday, December 3 2019 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Claire Benson

What's the talk about?

Dr Claire M Benson is a Fire & Explosion scientist & Safety engineer.  In this talk she will explore the world around us from a fire safety perspective discussing the systems that are designed to keep us safe, and how those systems have broken down under austerity and a de-regulatory agenda.  There are things all around us that we take for granted as safe, but they may not be as safe as we think.  


Based at London South Bank University, Dr Benson has over 10 years’ experience researching and lecturing as part of the Explosion and Fire Research Group.  She has a PhD in chemical engineering, specialising in high pressure oxygen system safety and has conducted research for the London Fire Brigade, Sellafield Ltd and the Ministry of Defence, and collaborated with the British Standards Institution, the Health and Safety Executive, and numerous aerospace and industrial engineering companies.  With a forensic degree background Claire has additionally done work with the London Fire Brigade, and has helped assess car fires for health and safety lessons, and completed projects on how arson data is collected, shared and used.

Nessa Carey

When?
Tuesday, October 29 2019 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Nessa Carey

What's the talk about?

In 2018 the world woke up to gene editing with a storm of controversy over twin girls born in China with genetic changes deliberately introduced by scientists – changes they will pass on to their own offspring. Although genetic modification (GM) has been with us for 45 years now, the new system known as CRISPR or gene editing can manipulate the genes of almost any organism with a degree of precision, ease and speed that we could only dream of ten years ago. Applications range from increasing yields of food crops to wiping out invasive species.  But is it ethical to change the genetic material of organisms in a way that might be passed on to future generations? If a person is suffering from a lethal genetic disease, is it unethical to deny them this option? Who controls the application of this technology, when it makes ‘biohacking’ – perhaps of one’s own genome – a real possibility? 

Nessa will guide us through this cutting-edge technology that will radically alter our futures and the way we prevent disease.
Nessa Carey is a British biologist working in the field of molecular biology and biotechnology. She is International Director of the technology transfer organisation PraxisUnico and a Visiting Professor at Imperial College London.
She is the author of "The Epigenetics Revolution", "Junk DNA: A Journey Through the Dark Matter of the Genome" and "Hacking the Code of Life: How gene editing will rewrite our futures".

Laura von Nordheim

When?
Tuesday, September 3 2019 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Laura von Nordheim

What's the talk about?

It is essential to celebrate health and beauty at every size, shape and weight. Obesity, however, is a serious health condition that affects more than 42 million children worldwide. Rather than driven by personal choice, weight gain is closely linked to our environment. Media clearly affects our food choices, eating behaviours and exercise habits - and can be used for better or worse.

Find out how food advertising impacts our eating behaviour - and how we can use this powerful influence to improve children’s diets!

Laura has always had a passion for health and wellbeing - the health and wellbeing of individuals, communities and of our planet as a whole. Nutrition quickly became the focus of her career path and she worked as a health interventionist, cooking instructor and chef for a wide range of community and governemental projects. Working in clinics for children and adults affected by eating disorders including anorexia, bulimia, binge-eating and obesity gave Laura valuable insight into eating behaviour while completing her BSc Psychology and MSc Health Psychology in London. As a postgraduate researcher at University of Sheffield, Laura investigates ‘Media influence and Childhood Obesity’.

Natalie Bennett

When?
Tuesday, August 6 2019 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Natalie Bennett

What's the talk about?

Natalie Bennett was the leader of the Green Party from 2012-2016. Over that time she and the party became known as champions of the policy of universal basic income - a guarantee that people's basic needs will be met by an unconditional payment to meet their essential needs. She argues that it is a guarantee of the basic human right to life, a way of providing people with the chance to use their talents well, and ends benefit traps. No one would be left penniless, as far too many are being left now by zero-hours contracts and swingeing benefit sanctions. And it might mean that sewer cleaners are paid more than bankers - as they probably should be. Trials are underway now in Finland, Holland, Canada, the US and Kenya - it is an idea that is catching on fast, in part because of fears about the impact of automation on jobs.

Why the Parole Board Releases Bad People

Emma McClure

When?
Tuesday, July 2 2019 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Emma McClure

What's the talk about?

In this talk prison lawyer Emma McClure lays out how the Parole Board operates in practice; the way risk assessments are conducted and the problems that exist in the current system in trying to make evidence-based decisions and the management of society’s most dangerous people within a problem-ridden criminal justice system.

Emma is a solicitor specialising in representing prisoners and mental health patients. She regularly appears before the Parole Board and Mental Health Tribunal. She is also a public speaker interested in the intersection between the pursuit of justice and critical thinking.

Dr Clare Allely

When?
Tuesday, June 4 2019 at 7:30PM

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Where?

48-52 Canal St
Nottingham
NG1 7EH

Who?
Dr Clare Allely

What's the talk about?

In this talk, the Path towards Intended Violence will be applied in the case of the mass shooting perpetrated by Dylann Roof on June 17, 2015 at an Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. This perspective is important since it attempts to build on accounts regarding how he progressed towards his mass shooting, beyond the information presented in the forensic evaluations already available. Forensic evaluations will also be explored. Finally, the Path towards Intended Violence will be discussed as a potential way forward towards trying to identify individuals who may be more vulnerable and at-risk, so that appropriate interventions and supports can be put in place in order that such extreme violence can be prevented.

Dr Clare Allely is a Reader in Forensic Psychology at the University of Salford and an affiliate member of the Gillberg Neuropsychiatry Centre (GNC) at Gothenburg University, Sweden. Dr Allely holds a PhD in psychology from the University of Manchester, having previously graduated with an MA (hons.) in Psychology from the University of Glasgow, an MRes in Psychological Research Methods from the University of Strathclyde and an MSc degree in Forensic Psychology from Glasgow Caledonian University