Previous year >>

Rebecca Fox

When?
Thursday, August 23 2018 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Rebecca Fox

What's the talk about?

 Most of us weren't born reasonable. We were born into a superstitious culture with only our ramshackle primate brains to try and figure out what’s going on. Reason, an appreciation for evidence and critical thinking skills are virtues that most of us had to fight for and that we have to work hard to keep up in difficult situations.

Rebecca is no exception, she grew up believing many strange things and has had to train herself to think critically. Instead of being embarrassed by our former beliefs Rebecca thinks it is important to have compassion for and interest in what we used to believe and why we believed it. Instead of feeling shame for having been wrong, we should be proud that we had the courage to overturn beliefs that proved to be wrong.

In this talk Rebecca will discuss who she was before, and after she ‘became reasonable’ and overturn the myth that there is such a thing as ‘perfectly reasonable’ we are all, after all, a work in progress.

-----

Rebecca is passionate about skeptical education because she has found the tools of skepticism to be profoundly empowering. Learning to think clearly has made her safer, more confident and happier. Drawing on her experience as a skeptical educator and comic book artist she will present some ideas that will help you improve your critical thinking skills and the way you think about how you think.

Professor Sophie Scott

When?
Thursday, July 26 2018 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Professor Sophie Scott

What's the talk about?

Professor Scott will be addressing sense and nonsense and humans brains, and what we think we should be looking for in the study of sex differences.

We often think that it's obvious that men and women must have very different brains. But the evidence for large scale differences in male/female brain structure and function can be hard to come by. And the things we try to explain away with brain differences can be very specific, and highly driven by cultural stereotypes. This can get even messier when we try to account for sexual preferences by looking at brain differences. In this talk I will look at some of the shortcomings of the approaches and try and unpack the sense from the hype.

Sophie Scott is a research scientist who investigates human communication and the human brain, with a particular emphasis on the neurobiological basis of vocal communication and how this can go wrong. She is particularly interested in addressing both verbal and non-verbal aspects of vocal communication and has pioneered the study of the neuroscience of laughter. At night, she attempts to turn theory into practice by performing stand-up comedy. Sophie was the Royal Institution Christmas Lecturer in 2017.

There is a £3 donation to cover speaker expenses.

Ash Pryce

When?
Thursday, June 28 2018 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Ash Pryce

What's the talk about?

Roll up! Roll up! Roll up! Gather ye round the traveling caravan, as Snake Oil Salesman Ash Pryce demonstrates the miraculous curative abilities of psychic surgery, taught to your humble trickster by a wise man in the Philippines (or a magicians tool book, whichever sounds more wondrous). See with amazement the telekinetic forces at work as you learn how to move objects with your mind, psychically manipulate your finest silverware and read the minds of your peers. Or maybe, it’s all just a trick? 

Whereas the sister show How to Talk to the Dead looked specifically at spirit communication in the past, How to be a Psychic Conman will look at the more incredible, magical side of psychic claims that persist today. The types of demonstrations that blur the line between the honest deception of magic, and the dishonesty of those hoping to make a quick buck out of your deep rooted beliefs.

The show will involve demonstrations and explanations of telekinesis tricks, metal bending, psychic surgery and remote viewing as well as look at government funded research into psychic phenomena, and the shoddy protocols that allowed “psychics” to beat the legendary Zener card experiments in the 1930s. 

And if that wasn’t enough, interspersed throughout the show will be numerous on stage demonstrations of mentalism to add an extra layer of entertainment to the proceedings. 

Warning to those on the front row… there will be blood!

Due to the popularity of this event we will be operating a free ticket system to ensure we have enough seats. The tickets will be free of charge and we will be operating our door policy of £3 donation to cover speaker expenses. Click here to book your space!

Dr Devin Terhune

When?
Thursday, April 26 2018 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Dr Devin Terhune

What's the talk about?

Hypnosis is a valuable method for studying different facets of conscious awareness yet it continues to be one of the most misrepresented and misunderstood phenomenon in psychology.  Here I will dispel widespread myths and misconceptions about hypnosis and describe what psychologists, neuroscientists, and clinicians have learned about this fascinating phenomenon.

Devin Terhune is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at Goldsmiths, University of London where he studies conscious awareness and its top-down regulation.  His primary interests concern the neurocognitive basis of time perception and individual differences in hypnotic suggestibility.

Richard Clarke

When?
Thursday, March 22 2018 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Richard Clarke

What's the talk about?

Recent data from the World Health Organisation has indicated a fourfold increase in cases of measles in 2017 compared to previous year (from 5273 to 21 315 cases) across the European region (www.euro.who.int/en/media-centre/sections/press- releases/2018/europe-observes- a-4- fold- increase-in- measles-cases- in-2017- compared-to- previous-year). These cases subsequently lead to hundreds of hospitalisations, and 35 recorded deaths. While some of these cases were in those too young to be vaccinated, or those that had other health concerns that made vaccination inadvisable, the majority of the cases were in people who had actively made a choice to avoid immunisation.

The reasons why an individual may refuse a vaccine back by extremely strong safety and efficacy evidence are wide ranging and complex. In this talk, Richard will introduce you to the concept of Vaccine Hesitancy and explain how, risk perception, uncertainty, social influence and above all trust plays a role in vaccine delay, selection and refusal.

Can’t wait until the talk? Well, here’s an excellent related paper from 2005, based in your wonderful city of Brighton: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277953605000122 Enjoy!

Speaker: Richard Clarke is a health psychologist and 3 rd year PhD candidate with The Vaccine Confidence Project (www.vaccineconfidence.org/) based at The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. The academic field of vaccination is very wide, Richard area of expertise focuses on the fluffy social science related to vaccine delivery. For all things vaccine science please visit The Vaccine Knowledge Project at www.vk.ovg.ox.ac.uk/

 

John Richards

When?
Thursday, February 22 2018 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
John Richards

What's the talk about?

 John Richards ia a Director of Atheist Alliance International. He is a retired Science teacher who just can’t stop and thanks to the internet he has a much bigger class than ever! He blogs and writes books using the pseudonym Elliot George.

 
He has just returned from New Zealand where he presented and debated in Auckland. The current tour includes a presentation on How to deal with Believers and an update on the work of AAI. Come and hear how we are helping atheists around the world. 

Kyle D Evans

When?
Thursday, January 25 2018 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Who?
Kyle D Evans

What's the talk about?

 From Bob Dylan and Beyonce’s algebraic song titles to Kate Bush’s (near) perfect recital of pi to fifty decimal places, pop stars have been dropping maths references into their tunes for decades.  It just takes a certain kind of mathematical pedant to notice them all...


Enter folk mathematician Kyle D Evans and his trusty guitar, here to take you on a comedic musical tour through some unexpected parallels between maths & pop.  Come prepared for a fun night for maths enthusiasts and novices alike.

Kyle is a folk singing mathematician, comedian & teacher who was the 2016 UK winner of Famelab, an international competition to find the most exciting new voices in science communication.  He has talked & sung about maths & pop at various festivals including Cheltenham Science Festival, Blissfields and Blue Dot and has appeared on BBC Radio 4’s cult numbers show ‘More or Less.’  He is also very proud of having a song about the Riemann Hypothesis used as a local radio jingle - surely a world first.

 

When he isn’t singing he is doing maths and when he isn’t doing maths he is singing.


 

Dr Alice Howarth

When?
Thursday, November 23 2017 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Dr Alice Howarth

What's the talk about?

 One in two of us will suffer with cancer in our lifetime and almost all of us have some experience of the disease. But do we really know what cancer is and how we can work towards a cure? Is a cure even possible? And how can we arm ourselves with the right information to help us prevent and treat cancer?

Alice is a researcher who has worked in the Institute of Translational Medicine at the University of Liverpool with both non-profit and for-profit organisations. In this talk she will discuss what cancer is, how it works and just how we are working towards understanding and curing the disease. She will talk about the complexities of research and some of the big success stories that relate directly to some of the many types of cancer. Only when we understand the difficulties we face can we discern between bogus cancer treatment claims and genuine scientific advancement in this field.

James Williams

When?
Thursday, October 26 2017 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
James Williams

What's the talk about?

 There are many myths about the brain, but in our schools one of the most persistent is learning styles – the idea that there are a number of styles of learning, such as visual, aural or kinaesthetic – and that certain children respond better if teaching is directed towards their preferred learning style. Another, ‘brain gym’ is the idea that rubbing key parts of your body could wake your brain up or drinking water gives you energy.

 

 

Edumyths and brain myths abound – but why do people believe them? Why have we rejected Father Christmas, but cling on to the idea that we only use 10% of our brains? In this talk the origins of some of the more popular neuromyths are divulged and  we will explore brain belief systems, why we believe nonsense and how, sometimes, even direct evidence isn’t enough to convince people they are wrong.

 

James Williams is a lecturer in education at the University of Sussex. He is regularly called upon as an education expert to provide commentary and interviews on a range of media from the BBC to ITV and local radio. He is a regular essayist for the Local Argus newspaper.

 

His research interests currently revolve around teachers and their knowledge and understanding of the nature of science' and the scientific method. He also researches the teaching of evolution and the issues surrounding creationism in schools.

Jamie Bartlett

When?
Thursday, September 28 2017 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Jamie Bartlett

What's the talk about?

Jamie Bartlett will talk about his new book Radicals, which is an exploration of the individuals, groups and movements rejecting the way we live now, and are attempting to find alternatives.

He will take us inside the strange and exciting worlds of the innovators, disruptors, idealists and extremists who think society is broken, and believe they know how. From dawn raids into open mines to the darkest recesses of the internet, Radicals introduces us to some of the most interesting and important movements today: the US Transhumanist Party, far-right groups seeking to close the borders, militant environmentalists striving to save the planet's natural reserves by any means possible, libertarian movements founding new countries, autonomous cooperatives in self-sustaining micro-societies, and psychedelic pioneers attempting to heal society with the help of powerful hallucinogens.

 He will discuss the prospects for these new political movements, why they are growing now, and whether there is anything the mainstream can learn from them. 

Jamie Bartlett is the Director of the Centre for the Analysis of Social Media at the think-tank Demos, where he specialises in online social movements and the impact of technology on society. He is also author of the best selling book The Dark Net and a regular commentator on national and international media outlets

Anthony Warner

When?
Thursday, August 24 2017 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Anthony Warner

What's the talk about?

 Anthony Warner somehow managed to complete a Biochemistry Degree at Manchester University before deeply disappointing his parents by deciding that the heat of the professional kitchen was the career for him. After ten years in restaurants, hotels and events-catering he became a development chef in the food manufacturing industry and has spent the last 11 years working on some of the UK’s best-known brands and products.

 

 In 2016, driven by frustration at the clearly unscientific messages being spewed out by a new breed of healthy eating celebrities, he started the Angry Chef blog, intended to appeal to a few similarly frustrated food industry professionals. Despite frequent attempts to alienate his readers, the blog has grown in popularity, forcing a middle-aged man to reluctantly engage with social media. Terrified at the prospect of being described as a ‘food-blogger’, Anthony has tried in vain to keep Angry Chef anonymous, but has sadly failed to do so as newspapers and magazines continue to approach him in the hope he might say something controversial about Jamie Oliver.

He now writes regularly for New Scientist, The Pool and the Sunday Times, and his first book, The Angry Chef - Bad Science and the Truth about Healthy Eating was published by Oneworld in July. He has appeared on Inside Science, The Food Programme and was once asked if he would be happy  to eat his own dog on The Moral Maze.

 

Anthony does not have a food philosophy. He is a pretty decent cook, but is not an expert in anything. He is merely curious and determined to get to the truth. He loves food, loves science and is ambivalent about Marmite. He lives in the Nottinghamshire countryside with his wife, daughter and a slightly unbalanced Springer Spaniel. 

Dr. Joseph Uscinski

When?
Thursday, July 27 2017 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

39 Ditchling Road
Brighton
BN1 4SB

Who?
Dr. Joseph Uscinski

What's the talk about?

Why do Americans believe conspiracy theories? Who does the scapegoating, and who is the goat? What role did conspiracy theories play in the election of Donald Trump? Are conspiracy theorists prone to violence, and are we currently in danger from conspiracy theories?

Dr. Uscinski will answer these questions and more by drawing on rich data collected from the internet, newspapers, and surveys. The surprising answers suggest that conspiracy theories are not the product of mental illness, government distrust, or even social exclusion. Nor are conspiracy theories heuristics used to make sense of complicated events or simplify a dizzying world.   

Instead, conspiracy theories are rational reactions to power. They are tools used by the politically weak to balance against potential threat. Whether conspiracy theorists know it or not, their theories must conform to the current distribution of power to resonate. In short, conspiracy theories are for losers.

bestkinky.com