OxNet Study Day

This year’s successful OxNet applicants joined a scholarly community by attending their first Study Day at Ushaw College in Durham, along with Dr Peter Claus and Professor Giles Gasper.

We welcomed students from 8 Sixth Forms and Colleges, 4 of whom are new to OxNet this year – Benfield School, Park View Academy, Prior Pursglove, Southmoor Academy, St Robert’s of Newminster, Stockton Sixth Form, Sunderland College and Byron Sixth Form.

Students threw away the boundaries of A-level study, and became undergraduates for the first time. They learned how to analyse gobbets of texts, debated the meaning of a ‘discipline’, and considered the criteria of what truly makes a science or a humanity. For example, is there really such a big difference between Physics and History? Students split into groups to present their findings, and were given one key piece of guidance – “you have not only the right, but the duty, to disagree”. Discussions were punctuated with tours of Ushaw College, including its chapel with a secret tunnel under the floor, and a library filled with over 30,000 books.

The day finished with a guide on university admissions from Richard Petty of Trinity College, Oxford, along with a student’s perspective on being a Northerner in Oxford from Tom Clennett, ex-student of Dyke House College in Hartlepool and current student of Chemistry at Brasenose College, Oxford.

Students came away with the notion that learning is like doing a jigsaw –  although the pieces may seem unclear at times, they eventually connect to create a coherent and exciting whole.

OxNet North-East: Seeing Is Believing

The OxNet-Ordered Universe 2019 seminar programme is in full swing with the 2019 cohort of school students aged 16-17 (Lower Sixth Form, Year 12) from the North-East. Students from Southmoor Academy, St Anthony’s, St Robert of Newminster, and Park View Academy, Continue reading

OxNet North-East – sound as a bell

The OxNet-Ordered Universe 2019 seminar programme is hitting its stride with the 2019 cohort of school students aged 16-17 (Lower Sixth Form, Year 12) from the North-East. Students from Southmoor Academy, St Anthony’s, St Robert of Newminster, and Park View Academy, Continue reading

OxNet North-East – up and away

The OxNet-Ordered Universe 2019 programme for a new cohort of school students aged 16-17 (Lower Sixth Form, Year 12) from the North-East is underway. Students from Southmoor Academy, St Anthony’s, St Robert of Newminster, and Park View Academy, Continue reading

Saving Catholic Grosseteste…Public Lecture

Next week, Thursday 22nd February, Dr Jack Cunningham from Bishop Grosseteste University will be delivering a public lecture, at Ushaw College, County Durham, as part Ushaw Lectures Series run by Durham University’s Centre for Catholic Studies, and in association with the Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies.

Saving Catholic Grosseteste: Fr Philip Perry’s Lost Biography

The lecture will explore the wonderful new discovery of a late 18th century life of Continue reading

Sculpting With Light: Medieval and Modern Cosmology

It is delightful to announce a successful application to the Leverhulme Trust Artist in Residence Scheme for Alexandra Carr. Sculpting With Light: Medieval and Modern Cosmology will confront human attempts to grasp and master the structure and meaning of the universe. Inspired by Durham’s resources, from illuminated medieval manuscripts to the DiRac2-Super-Computer, the residency will enable Alex to spend the summer in Durham, working with Giles and Richard Bower and Tom McLeish, and many others, to explore medieval and modern cosmology. Continue reading

Heaven’s Above! An Interactive Exhibition

Well, it has been about three weeks since the Being Human, National Festival of Humanities activities took place in Durham. Philipp Nothaft’s magnificent lecture on the dating of Easter (just before Advent, appropriately) on the 18th November, which attracted an audience of over 80 and is available in video form, began events. The lecture took place Continue reading

Events this week! Heaven’s Above

Being Human, the National Festival of Humanities, opens across the UK on the 17th November, this Thursday. With nine days of events from Scotland to Cornwall, Northern Ireland to London this year is as diverse in the range of research inspired by the humanities, as it is in geography! There are a number of events taking place in the North-East of England: Hoping for Peace, Imagining War: British Writers 1890s-1920s and The Power of Print in 18th Century Newcastle organised by Northumbria University, Scaling the Heights: Mountains and Vertical MegastructuresMaternity Tales – Listening to Birth Spaces Past and Present and Hope and Fear in Children’s Books organised by Newcastle University. And, there are the two events organised at Durham University under the umbrella title of Heaven’s Above! Giles was talking about the last two in particular on the Ingrid Hagemann Show today (13.11.16   –  at around 1hr 45 mins in on the listen again): the excitement of medieval astronomy, mechanical clocks, and what he’d like to do if he could go back in time. Continue reading

Michael Brooks – At the Edge of Uncertainty: A Journey to the Wild Frontiers of Science

Screenshot 2014-11-26 12.30.10For those of you who were not able to be with us for Michael Brooks‘s fabulous lecture ‘At the Wild Frontiers of Science’, delivered as part of the Being Human Festival of Humanities, at Ushaw College on 19th November, we are delighted to present it here. It is a mind-stretching tour of questions for modern science, from blackholes, to human-animal relations, epigenetics and the nature of human identity and consciousness. Be inspired. Continue reading

BBC Newcastle – Grosseteste Day: Being Human Festival

SOCIAL_MEDIA_RGB_02_500PXSo, the Durham Facing Out programme for the Being Human Festival of Humanities starts tomorrow – with Face to Face Encounters in Libraries based around the portrait in  Cosin’s library, which goes on for the week. Dark Ages to Dark Matter takes place on Tuesday, 18th, with Michael Brook’s Public Lecture at Ushaw College the following evening: 5.30 for 6.00 pm. You can hear Giles being interviewed by Ingrid Hagemann on her show this morning, the interview is about  2 hours 36 minutes (well, 2 hours, 37 minutes and 27 seconds to be more precise) into the listen-again podcast, which is available for the next four weeks. It was great to chat about why Grosseteste should be more of a household name, and the exciting ways in which the past can inspire the present and the future. Continue reading