Discover inspiring stories with York St John University

Published: 6/06/2017

York St John University will host a variety of thought-provoking events as part of the York Festival of Ideas, including a performance about the history of mental health treatment and an event focusing on how Britain’s historic international relationships can help form future policy.

The Story of Things: a celebration of human ingenuity and invention is the theme for the York Festival of Ideas this year. Launched by the University of York in 2011, the festival caters for all ages and seeks to demonstrate to residents and visitors the power of education and ideas. Now in its seventh year, the festival takes place from Tuesday 6 June to Sunday 18 June 2017.

The festival consists of a range of events including talks, performances and interactive experiences at venues across the city including Fairfax House, York Minster, Merchant Adventurers’ Hall and the University of York.

York St John University has put together a programme of interactive events that look back at history and to the future, to tell the story of human innovation and aims to inspire and challenge audiences to look at things in a new way.

Join us on campus for a discussion about ‘The Story of Britain’s Past & Future in the World’ on Saturday 10 June. This timely event seeks to address the confusion that has emerged over Britain’s past international relations. Six academics conducting research into Britain’s past relations with Europe, the USA, the Commonwealth, and Russia will discuss Britain’s current foreign policy options from a historical perspective. The event will provide the audience with the opportunity to consider how Britain can constructively pursue the foreign policy options available to it.

Dr Robert Barnes, Lecturer in History, York St John University said: “Britain’s exit from the European Union is a hot topic and York St John University has a crucial role to play in informing the public of the UK’s historic place in the world and sharing expertise on our options for the future”.

Other Festival of Ideas events hosted by York St John University include:

Medical Monstrosities & Objects of Terror, Thursday 8 June, 7.00pm
Prepare to be amazed and terrified by this lecture and performance dissecting the peculiar history of mental health treatment from the Victorian Lunatic Asylums and their ‘mad doctors’ to the present day.

Mapping Women’s History, Saturday 10 June, 2.00pm
York St John lecturers will join Laura Yeoman, Archivist, who will guide participants through some highlights of the York Archives materials that reveal the fascinating lives of women in York’s history. Accompany us to discover more about women’s important and lasting contributions to the past, present, and future of York.

A Short History of the Cooking Pot: An Introduction to the Caribbean Food and Storytelling, Saturday 10 June, 1.30pm
Dr Sarah Lawson Welsh, an expert on Caribbean food and writing, explores how the use of a simple iron pot or ‘duchy’, originally introduced by the Dutch for use on slave ships and used by African slave populations in the Caribbean, gave rise to a richly varied culinary and oral storytelling tradition.

World Café, Thursday 15 June, 5.30pm
Explore Northern England’s “wild places” with no need for waterproofs. Join York St John University academics for a World Café event as they lead discussions about “literary objects” from moors, uplands and other “wild” English landscapes.

Terra Two: Writing for an Off-World Colony, Saturday 17 June, 2.00pm
A creative writing workshop where participants will be asked what things they would take with them if they were leaving earth to set up the first off-world colony. Attendees will be asked to debate the question by looking at stories from some of the great SF writers.

To find out more about the festival visit the York Festival of Ideas website. To book or find out more information about these York St John University events please visit our events website.

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