Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Apocalyptic language and climate change

Good Morning,

I listened to Beyond Belief this week where there was a very good discussion of the use of apocalyptic language in the context of climate change. If you haven't heard it I recommend taking half an hour to do so.

Click the link in the title above to get to the programme.


Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Angels and Palestine

As mentioned last week, the Bookgroup is going well. We talk, we drink, we laugh, we share. About 8 or 9 people now every time. Some come for the books, some come for the company.

We decided against reading The Famished Road for the upcoming April 17th meeting. A number people have tried started it numerous times and...the last book promised angels and it didn't really give us angels. Roger suggested Quaker Sally Vicker's novel Miss Garnet's Angelas a wonderful alternative. A couple people oohed and aahed when it was suggested. So it seemed an obvious altenrative. Sorted.

In September Matt Robson and I are making an appeal which touches on Palestine, a topic I would like to know more about, so thought it might make sense to have a themed book club. Asked Matt what his favourite book on Palestine was and he said the graphic novel (which I keep meaning to read more of anyway) Palestineby Joe Sacco (and foreword by Edward Said in some editions I believe). Again, an enthusiastic response by the one person who had read it and nobody seemed to hate the idea so...date still to be set, but that's what is coming up in the bookgroup for September.

Sustainability and Arts in Development: upcoming events at the University of Sheffield

Two events that are open to the public and free at the University of Sheffield in the next couple weeks that are of a Quakerly sort of interest and seem to follow on from discussions that are going on at the Meeting.

The first is on sustainability (and city design and free canapes) and the second is on arts and development (and has live music with great musicians and more free food). Both take place in the ICOSS Building which is here: and looks like this:

1) Universities as Catalysts for Sustainable City Design

Are Professors really stuck in their Ivory Tower? Is higher education relevant? Can Universities really catalyze community change?

This talk and discussion will focus on an urgent new role for higher education institutions to be the catalysts for sustainable city design. This event will focus on the Sustainable City Year programme at the University of Oregon (USA), a programme that helps direct expertise of faculty and students toward a single city to help on sustainability issues. In this model of education, students get hands on experience in working with city officials and city officials get a range of new ideas from the next generation of thinkers and practitioners.

This year, the Sustainable City Year program is working with the City of Gresham (Oregon, USA) and is directing 15 faculty, 24 courses, 7 disciplines, and about 100,000 hours of student and faculty effort toward the city's needs. Can this model of higher education work in the UK?

FREE and Open to the Public. Canapes and drinks provided.

Sheffield: March 11 5:30-7:30 Sheffield University, ICOSS Board Room, 219 Portobello (To book a place, please email: judith.eversley@rtpi.org.uk)

Nico Larco, AIA, is an Assistant Professor of Architecture and Marc Schlossberg, PhD, is an Associate Professor of City Planning. Both co-Direct the Sustainable Cities Initiative at the University of Oregon (USA). Professor Schlossberg is also currently a Distinguished Fulbright Scholar based at the University of Sheffield's Town and Regional Planning Department.

Talks are supported by the Royal Town Planning Institute, Planning Aid, and the University of Sheffield.

2) Arts in Development (with music!)

This event will feature talks followed by open discussion on arts and development, involving Sheffield academics and artists working in the community, followed by a workshop on Indian and Southern African music. Come experience and participate in the santoor, tabla and vocal music mini fest.

For details see

Date – Thursday, the 18th of March, 2010, 1.30 -3.30 pm

Dr. Nadine Wills, LeTS, Univ. of Sheffield - A critical look at arts and development
Dr. Chamu Kuppuswamy, Sheffield Law School - Intellectual property rights and
traditional arts
Dr. Kathleen Van Buren, Department of Music, Univ. of Sheffield - Arts and healthcare
Mr. Philip Weiss, SEMEA, Sheffield and Mr. Mandla Sibanda, Sunduza Dance Theatre,
Sheffield - Traditional arts management and practice

Performances by John Ball, a member of Indus and SOSA-XA! Sounds of Southern Africa.

Venue – ICOSS (The Interdisciplinary Centre of the Social Sciences (see details below)

Admission is FREE, Please sign up with the event coordinator Chamu Kuppuswamy by emailing her at c.kuppuswamy@shef.ac.uk or leaving a message on 0114 2226877.