Autumn Programme 2021

September 29th

Philosophy After Covid.

In our first session we are going to meet up as a social event. After 18 months off because of Covid-19, we thought it would be a great idea to meet up again and discuss the future of the society, but also the future of the society itself. Are there any philosophical lessons to be learnt from Covid? If you are concerned about the future of the society (and maybe even society itself!), then do please come along.

For this session we are actually going to meet in the The London Inn, Charlton Kings in Cheltenham at 7pm. So you can have a drink too if you want. This is their website, which gives you a description and how to get there:

October 13th

Professor Havi Carel (University of Bristol):  What is it to be vulnerabilised?  

This talk proposes the concept of vulnerabilisation to refine common talk of ‘vulnerability’. I introduce the concept and distinguish several ways individuals can be made vulnerable by interpersonal encounters and interactions with social structures. I then offer two concepts from contemporary philosophy of illness to help us understand the dynamics of vulnerabilisation: the structural phenomenon of ‘institutional opacity’ and the clusters of person-level failings we call ‘pathophobic vices’. I end by suggesting that these concepts can illuminate the dynamics of vulnerabilisation in ways that may be of use to philosophers of illness and disability.  

Havi Carel is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Bristol and the author of Phenomenology of Illness (2016), Illness (2008, 2013, 2018 shortlisted for the Wellcome Trust Book Prize), and of Life and Death in Freud and Heidegger (2006).

This talk will be a Zoom talk and will begin at 7 pm. If you want to join the meeting please email who will send you the invitation.

Unfortunately this talk has been cancelled for personal reasons. We will reschedule this talk for the winter programme.

October 27th

Dr Omar El Masri (University of Gloucestershire) When does street art become ‘art’? The Value of Art on the Street.

Street art, or more broadly, vernacular images in the contemporary urban environment, have quickly become part of the modern discourse of cities – whether commenting on controversial social issues, praising the daily life, or making it humorously unfamiliar. In the last fifteen years, street art has come from being a trendy urban novelty to gaining a permanent position in official tourist guidebooks on cities and individual neighbourhoods, such as Berlin’s Kreuzberg, Paris’s Belleville, London’s Shoreditch, or New York’s Williamsburg. Street art is ephemeral, free and transforms once derelict areas into open air art galleries.  However, raging within the art world, is street art considered real art? What would Rembrandt van Rijn think of artists painting on the streets with the likeness of his works? Why does Banksy and Connor Harrington receive much praise and value to their work over others? Or is street art a public nuisance created by unknown artists who ‘seek’ to vandalise a location? Who decides? Here, the distinctions between what is street art and art on the street are juxtaposed against the backdrop of disagreements in the ‘high art’ world of museums and art galleries.  

Omar El Masri is a Lecturer in Criminology at the University of Gloucestershire. His research focuses on the emotional, economic, and social relationships which street artists have with cities emerging from conflict.

This talk will take place at the FCH campus, Cheltenham in Rm HC204 and will begin at 7 pm. Directions can be found here:

November 10th

Professor Martin Parker (University of Bristol): Should we shut down the business schools?

The history of the business school is a history of how the conventional carbon economy was built. There are around thirteen thousand business schools world-wide, and in the UK they teach about one in seven Higher Education students. Globally, the figure is more like one in five. In order to help produce a green, inclusive and democratic economy we need a new form of business education – the School for Organising. This talk explains what is wrong with how we teach business now and what we should do about it.

Martin Parker is Professor of Organization Studies and Lead for the Inclusive Economy Initiative at the University of Bristol. His recent books are Life After COVID19 (Bristol University Press 2020), Anarchism, Organization and Management (Routledge 2020) and Shut Down the Business School (Pluto 2018).

This talk will take place at the FCH campus, Cheltenham in Rm HC204 and will begin at 7 pm. Directions can be found here:

November 24th

Dr Linda Finlay (Open University & Psychotherapist) will share her experience of COVID-19

I will offer an autobiographical narrative of my experience of succumbing to COVID-19. I felt invaded, attacked by an unseen—but vividly imagined—presence. Although my condition was a so-called “mild” version, my radically transformed world forced me to question the taken-for-granted relationship between my Self, my body, and my sociomaterial world, both then and now. The lifeworldly focus of my story offers a way of unpacking and applying various philosophical ideas.   

Dr Linda Finlay is an existentially-orientated Integrative Psychotherapist (UKCP registered) in private practice. She also teaches psychology and counselling  at the Open University, UK. Her many publications include her book, Phenomenology for therapists: Researching the lived world (published by Wiley). Website: 

This talk will be a Zoom talk and will begin at 7 pm. If you want to join the meeting please email who will send you the invitation.

December 8th

Dr Patrice Haynes (Liverpool Hope University) Decolonising Philosophy of Religion in Conversation With African Indigenous Religions

Increasingly, philosophy of religion is charged with failing to attend to the diversity of religions in the world, typically focusing on a narrow, abstract vision of Christian theism. This talk first historicises modern philosophy of religion in order to disclose the field’s entanglement with a colonial global order. Following the work of decolonial theorist Sylvia Wynter, I argue that a mandatory task for decolonising philosophy of religion is re-conceptualising the human beyond European ‘Man’ hailed as normative humanity. Drawing on the rich yet often-neglected resources in African indigenous religions, I develop the notion of an animist humanism. In developing this notion, my aim is not simply aim to expand the content of philosophy of religion but to renegotiate the field altogether, pointing to constructive possibilities that defy its colonial legacy

Patrice Haynes is a Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at Liverpool Hope University. Her research interests focus primarily on issues in philosophy of religion, particularly as these are reframed by continental, feminist and decolonial philosophies. She is currently working on her second book, tentatively titled Decolonising Philosophy of Religion in and through an African Cosmo-Sense, in which she challenges the Eurocentric focus of philosophy of religion and explores how African indigenous religions could reorient the field in exciting new ways

This talk will be a Zoom talk and will begin at 7 pm. If you want to join the meeting please email who will send you the invitation.

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