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Institute of Advanced Study

Festival of Humanities 2015

Festival of Humanities

Being Human, the UK’s first and only national festival of the humanities, returns for a second year between 12 and 22 November 2015.

Once more Durham University is hosting a series of events to participate in Being Human activitites. This has been made possible by a grant from the festival organisers, the School of Advanced Study, University of London, supported by the Arts & Humanities Research Council and the British Academy.

The Music of Light: public workshop and poster exhibition (14 November 2015, 2.00-4.00pm, Trevelyan College, Durham University, Elvet Hill Road

This event showcases research into understandings of light from the Middle Ages to modern science. Explore the creation of colours, send messages along a light beam and experience a simulation of light being bent by the gravity of your own bodies. Alongside modern science historical understandings of light will be presented, especially the world of Robert Grosseteste (d. 1253). This features the work of the Ordered Universe Research Project (www.ordered-universe.com), whose members will be on hand to explain the richness of collaboration between medievalists and modern scientists. Supported by the Institute of Physics, during the UNESCO International Year of Light, this event will coincide with the popular Durham Lumiere Festival. This is a free event: but you will need to get hold of a ticket. These will be available from the World Heritage Visitor Centre, Durham.

The Music of Light: Concert (14 November 2015, 4.00-5.00pm, Trevelyan College, Durham University, Elvet Hill Road

The Music of Light concert takes and explores the theme of light in music, and its connections to other expressions of the phenomenon and power of light. It will feature a world premiere of a new work, The Light, by local composer Janet Graham, as well as short pieces by Bach, Rachmaninov, Handel, Part and others. This musical journey from the Renaissance to contemporary society will be introduced with reflections on the ways in which music and physics share in a deep creative common structure, why light inspired so much wonderful music through the ages and whether music even help communicate some of the properties of light that physics helps us to understand. The concert, a collaboration with a local chamber choir, the Durham Singers, will be recorded. Supported by the Institute of Physics, during the UNESCO International Year of Light, and the RVW Trust, this event will coincide with the popular Durham Lumiere Festival. This is a free event: but you will need to get hold of a ticket. These will be available from the World Heritage Visitor Centre, Durham.

For further information about any of these Durham University events please contact: Dr Giles Gasper