The Public Engagement Team were thrilled to be a part of the UK’s first ever national festival of the humanities – Being Human Festival! We held a range of events, involving discussion, debate, public lectures, workshops and opportunities for the public to meet researchers.
The festival programme concentrated on activities that make humanities research accessible to the wider community and show the impact the role of humanities has on the cultural, political and social life of the UK.
Most of the festival was held at Korova Arts Café and Bar, in the heart of Preston city centre. Although St Andrews C of E Primary School joined in with the festival fun and visited UCLan’s Moot Court Room for a Live Trial Workshop! The children loved the session; getting fully into character, exploring right and wrongs, getting dressed up and learning interactively.
The week began with Lunchbox Sessions by Theresa Saxon, who delved into Charles Dickens and his relationship with the stage and Yvonne Reddick reading her beautiful poetry, held Tuesday and Wednesday 12.30-13.00. Both these sessions were incredibly presented and interesting!
On Thursday evening, Will Kaufman performed the amazing Woodie Gurthie: Hard Times and Hard Travellin’ show, in which he set the songs of Woody Guthrie alive. He sang hard-hitting songs such as ‘Vigilante Man’ and ‘I Ain’t Got No Home’ and fascinated the audience!
Saturday consisted of Coffee & Conversations sessions, which gave the public chance to talk to our academics about their research topics and their roles at the university. There were also talks held from 11.30am-15.30pm upstairs in the café. Alan Rice gave a fascinating session about the slave trade, exploring true stories of suffering around the world. Robert Poole and Peter Lucas discussed the first views of earth from space, and the philosophical side of seeing Earth from the moon- our place in the Universe. Then came a talk on the temperance movement in Preston by Annemarie McAllister, interactive with temperance songs and incredible images!
The festival was a great way of showcasing our academics excellent knowledge and talent! We would just like to take this opportunity to thank Korova and our academics for getting involved.