Previous year >>

A Pride of Ex Muslims

 Sadia Hameed

When?
Wednesday, August 16 2017 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Sadia Hameed

What's the talk about?

The Council of Ex Muslims of Britain (CEMB) marched in the London pride procession this year to express their solidarity for those LGBT individuals in Muslim majority countries that would be executed simply for who they are. 
 

Although there were Christian groups marching with placards saying "God is gay" and "Jesus has two fathers", CEMB's "Allah is Gay" placards have recieved a deluge of negative press, even though the response from those that came to watch the march was largely positive.  

 

Sadia Hameed is a spokesperson for the  Council of Ex Muslims of Britain and has worked in the violence against women's sector for much of her career, with a focus on the experiences of Black and Minority ethnic women. 
 
She was awarded Activist of the year in March by the Iranian and Kurdish Women's Rights Organisation and Selected as one of the top 100 women in the World by Lift Effects. 

Dr. CiarĂ¡n O'Keeffe

When?
Wednesday, July 19 2017 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Dr. Ciarán O'Keeffe

What's the talk about?

 Everyone is welcome, whatever your views on this topic! 

A cash bar is available, and this event is totally free to attend!

Join Dr. Ciarán O'Keeffe as he shares his adventures as a Parapsychologist testing various special claimants in the lab. Dr. O'Keeffe will also provide accounts of his frequent battles with mediums and psychics, and reveal "evidence" from his field-work examining haunting experiences (or as he says, "Ghostbusting"!) in addition to his time spent on Most Haunted. 

Points of discussion may also include psychic criminology cases and topics in religious parapsychology, such as exorcism, possession and miracle blood.

Dr. Ciarán O'Keeffe is a Psychologist who works at Bucks New University, he has featured on Living TV's Most Haunted, and completed his PhD under the supervision of Richard Wiseman.

Richard Firth-Godbehere

When?
Wednesday, June 21 2017 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Richard Firth-Godbehere

What's the talk about?

 Over the last couple of decades, the topic of disgust has risen from the bowels of study to the mainstream of academic life. Probably ancient and universal, disgust is a sensation caused by a perception of boundary violation – that something can get inside us and cause harm. In one form or another it has guided humanity and other animals away from the contagious and the toxic. Disgust has also acted as a gatekeeper of morality for as far back as we have records, governing humanity’s sense of what is right and wrong as we link violations of cultural norms with feelings of revulsion. The problem is that while disgust might be universal, what causes it is not, and those causes can be a slave to the dictates of the powerful.

Richard Firth-Godbehere knows a lot about disgust. Over the past six years, he has been analysing and dissecting the history, philosophy, and psychology of disgust, culminating in a PhD in the origins of the English understanding of that feeling. He has come to the conclusion that it rules the world. From refusing certain foods to relationships to political opinions and religious beliefs, feelings of revulsion have directed human behaviour in ways matched by almost no other physical sensation. What’s more, we are as fascinated by the disgusting as we are appalled by it. Richard will be explaining how that happens, what disgust is, the history of revulsion and how one thing can always be found at the centre of it: oppression and power.

He will also be offering some six-legged treats and a little insight into your own disgust. Be prepared to be revolted.

Mark Stevenson

When?
Wednesday, May 17 2017 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Mark Stevenson

What's the talk about?

Join us for this FREE talk, everyone welcome. Cash bar available selling a range of drinks (including Rebellion Beer)

 

Our systems are failing. Old models – for education, healthcare, government, food production and energy supply – are creaking under the weight of modern challenges. As the world’s population heads towards 10 billion, it is clear we need new approaches. 

Futurologist Mark Stevenson sets out to find them, uncovering an enthralling picture of what can be done to address the world’s most pressing dilemmas, a journey that offers a much needed dose of down-to-earth optimism. It is a window on (and a roadmap to) a different and better future.

WARNING -Mark will be fitting as much as possible into his talk - this is a 100 mile-an-hour tour into the future, but fear not, there will be a time for questions and answers in the second half and for unpacking some of his ideas more fully!

MARK STEVENSON is a writer, entrepreneur, broadcaster, reluctant futurologist and founder of The League of Pragmatic Optimists. He has written for Radio 4, the Times, Sunday Times, Wall Street Journal, Telegraph, Guardian and New Statesman, and is the author of the critically acclaimed An Optimist’s Tour of the Future 

He was also a hugely popular speaker at last years QED conference in Manchester.

Skeptics in the Pub is a place for inquisitive people of all ages to meet and converse in the High Wycombe area.

Skeptics are people who yearn to discover the truth behind extraordinary claims that people or groups may make, this can be in areas of alternative therapies, the paranormal, religion and faith, the afterlife and many other areas of life. We we often end up talking about superstition, science, religious fundamentalism, health, censorship and conspiracy theory

We make no claims to balance, and actively promote science, freedom of expression and secular humanism..

You are welcome to come along and just sit and listen to others, or if you are braver get stuck right in with conversation and views!

Our Website is at wycombe.skepticsinthepub.org where you will find links to join our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter.

John Danaher

When?
Wednesday, April 5 2017 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
John Danaher

What's the talk about?

This is a bonus talk, as we will have two talks in April instead of the usual one! (Our social will now be on the 12th April at the Bootlegger)

This event is free, with costs being covered by voluntary donations, and there is a cash bar available!

Our speaker for this event is philosopher and lecturer in law - John Danaher.

John will discuss the strongest arguments for both sides of the abortion debate, as they currently exist, ethically and philosophically from a purely naturalistic perspective.

There will be a time for question and answers after the main talk, and a chance to discuss the issues surrounding this potentially controversial subject.

John is currently an academic and lecturer at the National University of Ireland (NUI), Galway. He teaches in the School of Law. He is also an affiliate scholar at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies. As John writes on his blog Philosophical Disquisitions - his research deals primarily with the ethical, social and legal implications of emerging technologies, but dances around some other philosophical topics. In the past John has written papers about social robots, the risks of advanced AI, the meaning of life and the future of work, the ethics of human enhancement, the intersection between law and neuroscience, the utility of brain-based lie detection, the philosophy of language, and the philosophy of religion.

 

Skeptics in the Pub is a place for inquisitive people of all ages to meet and converse in the High Wycombe area.

Skeptics are people who yearn to discover the truth behind extraordinary claims that people or groups may make, this can be in areas of alternative therapies, the paranormal, religion and faith, the afterlife and many other areas of life. We we often end up talking about superstition, science, religious fundamentalism, health, censorship and conspiracy theory

We make no claims to balance, and actively promote science, freedom of expression and secular humanism..

You are welcome to come along and just sit and listen to others, or if you are braver get stuck right in with conversation and views!

Our Website is at wycombe.skepticsinthepub.org where you will find links to join our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter.

Iszi Lawrence (and friends)

When?
Wednesday, March 15 2017 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Iszi Lawrence (and friends)

What's the talk about?

Will you be remembered after you're dead? 


Skeptical comedian Iszi Lawrence, and several friends (who as former speakers will be well known to many Wycombe Skeptics) battle to have their favourite little known character from history put on the Z List Dead List. Who wins? You (and the audience) decide! 

This is a totally free event, and a cash bar with lovely local beer and great selection of other drinks is available.

Iszi Lawrence is a podcaster, skeptic and comedian based in Reading. 

Iszi presents the podcast of the same name which has featured guests such as Jon Ronson, Griff Rhys Jones, Natalie Haynes, Neil Denny, Richard Herring etc. You can listen to it here: www.zlistdeadlist.com

This is going to be a lot of fun. the laughing, and the learning never ends (although technically we do only have the Arts Centre booked until 11pm...)

Ed Atkinson

When?
Wednesday, February 15 2017 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Ed Atkinson

What's the talk about?

 Burning carbon must be driven from our cheap-energy economy on a global scale - and soon - to stop a looming disaster.  (Climatologist Ed Hawkins from Reading University spoke brilliantly on this at High Wycombe SitP in 2015.) But is there a workable way to drive out Carbon? If nations, corporations or individuals ‘do the right thing’ and burn less carbon won’t that just make coal, oil and gas cheaper for everyone else? Just how cheap does installing new solar need to be to make it cheaper than turning on the valves in the Saudi oil fields?  It is easy to lose hope that change is possible, especially in Trump-World. The USA is the key to change and a group originating in the US 'Citizens Climate Lobby’ (CCL) is doing well there (notably with Republicans). They advocate a policy of a Carbon Fee which is all used to make a Dividend to the populace, thus making for a policy that is effective and politically attractive (most people are made better off).  There really is hope.

In this talk a local representative from CCL, Ed Atkinson, will outline the policy options and their merits. He’ll include Cap & Trade, subsidising renewables and efficiency measures, divestment, Carbon Taxes and its variant the CCL policy of Carbon Fee and Dividend. 

Ed will be delighted to get awkward questions leading to discussion in the SitP group.

 

Skeptics in the Pub is a place for inquisitive people of all ages to meet and converse in the High Wycombe area.

Skeptics are people who yearn to discover the truth behind extraordinary claims that people or groups may make, this can be in areas of alternative therapies, the paranormal, religion and faith, the afterlife and many other areas of life. We we often end up talking about superstition, science, religious fundamentalism, health, censorship and conspiracy theory

We make no claims to balance, and actively promote science, freedom of expression and secular humanism..

You are welcome to come along and just sit and listen to others, or if you are braver get stuck right in with conversation and views!

Our Website is at wycombe.skepticsinthepub.org where you will find links to join our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter.

How Neurononsense joined Psychobabble to Keep Women in Their Place

Gina Rippon

When?
Wednesday, October 19 2016 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Gina Rippon

What's the talk about?

There is a long history of debate about biological sex differences and their part in determining gender roles, with the ‘biology is destiny’ mantra being used to legitimise imbalances in these roles. The tradition is continuing, with new brain imaging techniques being hailed as sources of evidence of the ‘essential’ differences between men and women, and the concept of ‘hardwiring’ sneaking into popular parlance as a brain-based explanation for all kinds of gender gaps.

But the field is littered with many problems. Some are the product of ill-informed popular science writing ( neurotrash) based on the misunderstanding or misrepresentation of what brain imaging can tell us. Some, unfortunately involve poor science, with scientists using outdated and disproved stereotypes to design and interpret their research (neurosexism). These problems obscure or ignore the ‘neuronews’, the breakthroughs in our understanding of how plastic and permeable our brains are, and how the concept of ‘hard-wiring’ should be condemned to the dustbin of neurohistory.

This talk aims to offer ways of rooting out the neurotrash, stamping out the neurosexism and making way for neuronews.

Gina Rippon is Professor of Cognitive NeuroImaging in the Aston Brain Centre at Aston University. She has a background in psychology and physiology and uses brain imaging techniques such as Magnetoencephalography (MEG), functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) and electroencephalography (EEG) to investigate the relationship between patterns of brain activation and human sensory, cognitive and affective processes. Most recently her work has been in the field of developmental disorders such as autism. She has served as President of the British Psychophysiology Society (now the British Association of Cognitive Neuroscience).

She also writes and speaks on the use of neuroimaging techniques In the study of sex/gender differences, recently featured in the BBC Horizon programme “Is your Brain Male or Female?”. She is additionally involved in activities around the public communication of science, particularly in challenging the misuse of neuroscience to support gender stereotypes, and in work to correct the under-representation of women in STEM subjects. She has recently been appointed as an Honorary Fellow of the British Science Association.

Skeptics in the Pub is a place for inquisitive people of all ages to meet and converse in the High Wycombe area.

Skeptics are people who yearn to discover the truth behind extraordinary claims that people or groups may make, this can be in areas of alternative therapies, the paranormal, religion and faith, the afterlife and many other areas of life. We we often end up talking about superstition, science, religious fundamentalism, health, censorship and conspiracy theory

We make no claims to balance, and actively promote science, freedom of expression and secular humanism..

You are welcome to come along and just sit and listen to others, or if you are braver get stuck right in with conversation and views!

Dr Kat Arney

When?
Wednesday, August 24 2016 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Dr Kat Arney

What's the talk about?

The language of genes has become common in the media. We know they make your eyes blue, your hair curly or your nose straight. We're told that genes control the risk of cancer, heart disease, alcoholism or Alzheimer's. The cost of DNA sequencing has plummeted from billions of pounds to a few hundred, and gene-based advances in medicine hold huge promise. 

There are 2.2 metres of DNA inside every one of your cells, encoding roughly 20,000 genes. These are the 'recipes' that tell our cells how to make the building blocks of life, along with all the control switches ensuring they're turned on and off at the right time and in the right place. But rather than a static string of genetic code, this is a dynamic, writhing biological library. With the help of cats with thumbs, fish with hips and wobbly worms, Kat will unpack some of the mysteries in our DNA and explain the latest thinking about how our genes work.

 

Dr Kat Arney is a science writer and broadcaster whose work has featured on BBC Radio 4, the Naked Scientists and more. She has just published her first book, Herding Hemingway's Cats (Bloomsbury Sigma), about how our genes work. 

Johno Pearce

When?
Wednesday, July 27 2016 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Johno Pearce

What's the talk about?

Do we have free will, or are our ‘choices’ determined by our environment and past experience?

 Author and educator, Jonathan M.S.Pearce offers an entertaining introduction to the debate, and explains how new developments in brain science have influenced philosophers.

 We will also consider the impact of free will and determinism on Christianity’s concept of a judgmental God, and the implications for our justice system if we don’t have free will.

 An entertaining introduction to the age-old philosophical debate on whether we have free will or whether we live predetermined lives.

 Jonathan is a teacher and author from South Hampshire, who has dedicated many years of his life to all manner of things philosophical and theological. He is currently studying for a Masters in Philosophy, and is a founder member of the Tippling Philosophers, a friendly group of disparate believers and non-believers based in Hampshire.

 With many titles now under his belt, including an anthology of humanist and atheist poetry (Filling the Void), he has just written his first fiction book, combining philosophy and horror (Survival of the Fittest: Metamorphosis). The Nativity: A Critical Examination, and 13 Reasons to Doubt and followed soon after Free Will? An investigation into whether we have free will, or whether I was always going to write this book, a popular philosophy, science and theology book that examines the free will vs. determinism debate. He has also written The Little Book of Unholy Questions, which looks to show the incoherence of the idea of an all-loving, all-knowing and all-powerful God, ideas which were expanded in the ebook The Problem with “God”. As an interlude from writing about philosophy and theology, he has branched out by writing a book of advice for dads of twins; Twins: A Survival Guide for Dads.

 He blogs as A Tippling Philosopher on the Atheist Channel at Patheos – http://www.patheos.com/blogs/tippling

 

London Black Atheists

When?
Wednesday, May 18 2016 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
London Black Atheists

What's the talk about?

London Black Atheists present - Religion, Superstition and the Imperative for an African Enlightenment 

Europe is increasingly turning it's back on religion, the churches are turning to Africa to repopulate & fill the pews and pulpits. Religion is a web of unfounded claims, unverifiable assertions and unfalsifiable hypothesis, simply put religion is a big lie which must either be believed or face an eternity in everlasting hell fire. In the past, Black and Minority Ethnic peoples have suffered the most from religion and thanks to cultural and religious imperialism, are still suffering to this day. It is time for an African Enlightment.

 

We will be joined by Clive Aruede, Founder-Organiser of LBA, Lola Tinubu co-founder and organiser at LBA, and Audrey Simmons, organiser.at LBA.

About London Black Atheists - Despite the name Black, is a group that welcomes all atheists. Their mission is to encourage ethnic peoples of all stripes and particularly of the African Diaspora to come out as atheists to other atheists.

For social and historical reasons Black people tend to be very religious. The default position in Black society is that religion is a good thing that should be followed without question. LBA disagree. At some times and in some places, religion in the past has provided social cohesion, schools, hospitals, charities and the like, but the overwhelming evidence is that nowadays religion is divisive, physically harmful, mentally destabilising and morally bankrupt. It is a brake on social and scientific progress. 

A lively and engaged group based in London, we are excited to have members of LBA come speak to us at Wycombe Skeptics.

Skeptics in the Pub is a place for inquisitive people of all ages to meet and converse in the High Wycombe area. 

Skeptics are people who yearn to discover the truth behind extraordinary claims that people or groups may make, this can be in areas of alternative therapies, the paranormal, religion and faith, the afterlife and many other areas of life. We we often end up talking about superstition, science, religious fundamentalism, health, censorship and conspiracy theory

We make no claims to balance, and actively promote science, freedom of expression and secular humanism..

You are welcome to come along and just sit and listen to others, or if you are braver get stuck right in with conversation and views!

Our Website is at wycombe.skepticsinthepub.org, join ourFacebook page and follow us on Twitter.

Bob Churchill

When?
Wednesday, April 20 2016 at 8:00PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

The Old St John's Church
DesboroughRoad
High Wycombe
HP11 2PU

Who?
Bob Churchill

What's the talk about?

Around the world the non-religious are discriminated against by government-backed religious privilege, laws prohibiting advocacy or criticism, even the outright demonizing of atheism, humanism and secularism by authorities. In 13 countries you can even be put to death for "leaving" your presumed religion. 

Bob Churchill is the editor of the IHEU Freedom of Thought Report, an annual analysis of the violations of freedom against non-religious people globally. Bob will outline the basis for "freedom of thought and expression" and show how humanists are working globally for these freedoms, and other human rights.

Bob Churchill works in policy and communications at the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU), having previously worked at both the British Humanist Association and the Uganda Humanist Association. He studied philosophy at the University of Warwick and Queen's University, Canada, and has long-standing interests in secularism, Humanism, ethics and epistemology. He has appeared as a spokesperson on the likes of BBC News, Channel 4 News and Al Jazeera and as a speaker at Skepticon, the Institute of Fundraising Technology, the Conway Hall Ethical Society, and the European Humanist Youth Days.