The British Academy hosts five events for Being Human 2020

5 Oct 2020

This autumn, the British Academy will take people back in time to discover the history of the high-street charity shop, delve into the world of typewriter musicians and chart 250 years of changing British cuisine, as we hold five virtual events as part of the 2020 programme for Being Human, the UK’s national festival of the humanities.

Run in partnership with the British Academy and the Arts and Humanities Research Council and led by the School of Advanced Study at the University of London, the Being Human festival programme launches today with over 200 free events exploring this year’s theme of ‘New Worlds’ from 12 to 22 November.

The programme showcases a diverse range of events delivered by academic researchers in collaboration with community and cultural partners such as museums, artists, and charity organisations. Events include virtual tours, quizzes, exhibitions and storytelling, as well as socially distanced face-to-face activities and virtual cafés.

The five British Academy events as part of this year’s festival are:

How have international tastes influenced the food we eat today? Join food historians to explore 250 years of British cuisine and uncover our changing tastes at this online event.

Discover the hidden histories of your favourite high street treasure trove from the 20th century in this virtual tour.

Pick up your own sensory kit and step back in time through Greenock's diverse and complicated history to explore the sights, smells and stories of 'Sugaropolis'.

In this exhibition, explore a replicated UNHCR tent decorated by a Syrian refugee and discover more about the interior and exterior space. Learn how to make Arabic coffee as you chat with the researchers and reflect on what 'home' looks like for the people who have been forcibly displaced for years.

Delve into the world of typewriter artists and musicians who have harnessed typing technology in unique and creative ways and discover the typewriter's early musical connections.

Being Human will kick off with an online launch event on Tuesday 10 November with festival patron and broadcaster and historian Professor David Olusoga. Other highlights include: ‘Being Human in Conversation: the American Election’ with Professor Sarah Churchwell and Bonnie Greer; ‘Magical Mind: The World of Terry Pratchett’ with special guests Neil Gaiman, Rob Wilkins and Rihanna Pratchett; the Royal Institute of Philosophy’s ‘Can Old Philosophy Help Build our New World?’; and ‘Being Human in Conversation: Returning to our Senses’ with Professor Barry Smith.

This year researchers from a total of 81 universities and research organisations are involved, with four festival hubs hosted by the University of Derby, University of Glasgow, The University of Sheffield and Swansea University.

Contact the press office

For further information contact the Press Office on press@thebritishacademy.ac.uk  / 020 7969 5273 / 07500 010 432.

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