Being Human: 'Lost & Found'

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Festival of Humanities advSwansea University will once again feature as the only Welsh hub for Being Human and will share with Nottingham the proud distinction of being named a festival hub for three consecutive years. The other festival hubs are Queen’s Belfast, Dundee & Glasgow.

With a theme of 'Lost & Found', this year's celebration of the humanities is taking place nationally from 17th – 25th November 2017.

The festival, now in its fourth year, is led by the School of Advanced Study, University of London, in partnership with the Arts & Humanities Research Council and the British Academy. 

Our Welsh hub, 'Voices, Faces and Places', features creative and interactive activities on a diverse range of subjects.  Browse our list of events below, and book your free place now!

Programme Listing

17 November:  13:00-15:00

Rho dy Gymraeg i ni! 

(We want your Welsh! – Welsh medium event)

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Venue:  Tŷ’r Gwrhyd, Pontardawe

Siarad Cymraeg? If so, then come along to Tŷ’r Gwrhyd, Pontardawe, and become a film critic for the afternoon! We’ll be showing short clips from different videos and letting you and your friends tell us what you think of them. You’ll also get the chance to hear about our exciting community driven project called CorCenCC to collect all kinds of Welsh from all over Wales… and also how to download and use the fantastic new app we’ve developed. Come along, give us your Welsh and meet Swansea University experts Steve Morris and Tess Fitzpatrick from the team to find out more.  Suitable for: Welsh speakers aged 16+ and proficient adult learners of Welsh.

In association with Corpws Cenedlaethol Cymraeg Cyfoes (The National Corpus of Contemporary Welsh) - CorCenCC.

Book here  

Event Partner:  Tŷ'r Gwrhyd

18 November:  11:00 -12:30

Egyptian Mummy meets Demons:  Voices, Faces and Faraway Places 

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Swansea Museum 

Come along for a family friendly fun packed morning where Swansea University expert Dr Kasia Szpakowska will transport you to the magical realm of mummies and friendly and menacing demons! Link voices and faces in our ‘matching pairs’ game, meet the mummy and have a chance to decorate your own mummy! All mummy and demon-inspired costumes very welcome!

In association with Swansea University research centre Interpreting Egypt’s Past in Wales and the World (InEPPW) and The Ancient Egyptian Demonology Project 2K funded by the Leverhulme Trust.  

Book here

Event Partner:  Swansea Museum

18 November:  13:30-15:30

Bay of Plenty:  Stories of the City, Campus and Culture

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National Waterfront Museum

Come along to this family-friendly event exploring the 100-year history of Swansea University. Hear stories about the University and city, dress up in 1920s clothes and robes, and have fun recreating Swansea University’s oldest building, Singleton Abbey!

With Dr Sam Blaxland, in partnership with the National Waterfront Museum.

No booking requiredFurther information here.

Event Partner:  National Waterfront Museum  

20 November:  19:30–21:30

Football Fever – Jonny Owen and ‘Don’t Take Me Home’

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Cinema & Co 

Join us for a special screening of Don’t Take Me Home which documents the Welsh national football team’s incredible run to the semi-finals of the 2016 European Championships. The film tells the story of a success that gripped a nation and took the football world by surprise from the perspective of the players and the fans. Its award-winning director, Swansea University alumnus (and Welsh football fan!) Jonny Owen will discuss in a Q&A session chaired by sports historian Dr Martin Johnes (Swansea University) and introduced by media and film expert Sarah Crowther (Swansea University).  Age range: 12 years +

Book here

Event Partner:  Cinema & Co

21 November:  13:00-15:00

Wales/Cymru, Refugees, Voices, (Hi)stories

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Swansea Museum

What does it mean to travel to Wales as a refugee and settle on a more permanent basis? How have refugees’ voices and (hi)stories been interpreted / understood? Come along to Swansea Museum to meet contemporary refugees, hear their (hi)stories and voices, respond to their stories and others through performance and other creative activities and learn about oral history.

Introduced by Dr Kathryn Jones (Swansea University) in partnership with Swansea City of Sanctuary and Swansea Museum.

Part of the AHRC-funded European Travellers to Wales: 1750-2010 project.  

Book here

Event Partners:  Swansea City of Sanctuary; Swansea Museum

21 November:  18:15-19:45

My Family and Empire

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Swansea Central Library

Do you have a family story connected to the British Empire? Or are you simply interested in learning more? Here’s a chance to put your own experiences, and those of relatives and friends, into historical context. Led by Dr Catherine Fletcher of Swansea University, whose grandparents worked as missionaries in India (1940s-1960s), it will explore the range of archive resources available on these complex family histories. This is an interactive session and you are encouraged to bring along letters, photographs and objects connected to the workshop theme.

Age 11+ (under-16s accompanied by an adult).

Book here

Event Partners:  Swansea Libraries, City and County of Swansea

22 November:  11:00-16:30

Making Faces: Beauty Lost and Found

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YMCA, Swansea

Come along and discover the fascinating world of the face, from medieval beauty regimes to the disfiguring effects of work, from historic dental routines to the changing attitudes towards spectacles. Take the Implicit Bias test to see just how you respond to faces that look different, and find out about the work of charity Changing Faces. Join in our discussion about computer games that use scarring and facial disfigurement as entertainment and find out who has won our ‘make a face’ competition! And get ready to take interesting selfies…

Suitable for 14 years and over.

Book here

Event Partners:  Changing Faces UK and YMCA Swansea / Abertawe

22 November:  19:00-20:30

Voices for Today

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Oystermouth Library

Is literature the most powerful means we have for recording and exploring lived experience? Can fiction, poetry or memoir capture the tumultuous times we live in? Or is literature merely escapism? Award-winning writers Jasmine Donahaye, Anne Lauppe-Dunbar and Francesca Rhydderch, as well as alumnus Rebecca F. John, read from new work and talk about the challenges facing a writer in times of great political and cultural change.

Come along and share the title of a favourite book that has made you think about the connections between literature, society and politics.

Book here

Event Partners:  Swansea Libraries, City and County of Swansea, and Cover to Cover independent bookshop

23 November:  19:30-21:00

An Evening of Poetry with Simon Armitage and Daljit Nagra

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Great Hall, Bay Campus

Join us for this rare dynamic double-bill of two award-winning poets. As well as being two of the most exciting and relevant poets in the UK today Simon Armitage, Oxford Professor of Poetry, and Daljit Nagra, Poet in Residence for Radio 4, are also experienced broadcasters. Daljit Nagra will read from British Museum – a book that asks profound questions of our ethics and responsibilities at a time of great challenge to our sense of national identity. Simon Armitage will read from The Unaccompanied, which documents a world on the brink.

A discussion and Q&A will follow the reading.

Book here 

Event Partners:  Cover to Cover independent bookshop

24 November:  19:30-21:30

Multilingual Swansea – a Celebration!

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Venue:  Volcano Theatre

Swansea has a rich variety of language communities, dialects, accents, alphabets and scripts. How much of this can be captured in pictures?

Join us at Volcano Theatre for ‘Multilingual Swansea’, a family friendly evening of photography, poetry and music – a celebration of voices! You’ll have a chance to see photographic responses from the public, engage with local poets, artists and musicians, and find out our competition winners.

This event, in partnership with Volcano Theatre, is part of Cross-Language Dynamics – Reshaping Community, a four-year (2016-2020) programme, one of four within the Open World Research Initiative of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (OWRI).

Book here

Event Partners Volcano Theatre

25 November:  11:00-12:30

‘Pieces of a Jigsaw’:  Portraits of Artists and Writers in Wales

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Venue:  Glynn Vivian Art Gallery

Join us for the book launch and exhibition of a unique collection of portraits from the Welsh arts scene taken by Bernard Mitchell.

Pieces of a Jigsaw is a selection from the Welsh Arts Archive project which began in 1966 with a series of portraits of Dylan Thomas’ Swansea friends, including artists Ceri Richards and Alfred Janes, poet Vernon Watkins and composer Daniel Jones.

In 1990 Bernard Mitchell recommenced his work and added many more artists and writers including Will Roberts, Mererid Hopwood, Josef Herman, John Petts, Ivor Roberts Jones, Glenys Cour and Ernest Zobole.

Book here

Event Partners:  Glynn Vivian Art Gallery; Parthian Books; Richard Burton Archives at Swansea University

School Event

Cuban Crisis Map - Being Human 2017Out of the Shadows Project - Being Human Festival of the Humanities workshop for Schools

The Cuban Missile Crisis at 55: origins, development, and lessons for the 21st century

Thursday 23 November, Bishop Vaughan School, Swansea.

55 years ago the United States and the Soviet Union went head to head in the most dangerous nuclear confrontation and the Cold War: the Cuban Missile Crisis. Humanity had never been so close to nuclear annihilation. But what really happened during the crisis? How did the crisis come about? Who was responsible? How was the crisis resolved? What pressures did American and Soviet policymakers confront in the incredibly tense ‘Thirteen days’? The Out of the Shadows project will run a workshop to answer these and other questions regarding the crisis. The workshop will include a lecture on the crisis and a role play in which pupils will be asked to step into this nuclear confrontation. It will be an opportunity to recover lost documents, to re-evaluate forgotten events and leaders, and to find valuable lessons for the 21st century.