Skip to content

Open Lectures at the University of York

A lecture audience (c) John Houlihan

Every term, the University organises free open lectures on a wide variety of topics and aimed at a general audience.  Some require tickets (available on individual event pages) but most do not. Where tickets are needed, this is also indicated in the publicity.

We distribute information on upcoming lectures to interested members of the public at the start of each academic term (October, January and April). If you would like to receive a free copy of this leaflet either by email or by post, please join our mailing list.  Updated lecture details are also available here on our web pages. As they are updated frequently, they may publicise lectures which we were unable to include in the leaflet.

If you have an accessibility need, please contact us at open-lectures@york.ac.uk or 01904 324466, and we will make every effort to accommodate you.

The majority of lectures are held on the University campus. There is a regular bus service and the campus is easily accessible by bicycle. Car parking is available in the Pay & Display car parks, which are free after 6pm. Please note however space in the Field Lane car park on Campus East is limited. More information on reaching the University together with maps and additional parking information can be found on our Information for Visitors webpages.

Download our Autumn 2017 open lectures leaflet (PDF  , 3,785kb)Summer 2017 open lectures leaflet (PDF  , 870kb)

See all of our current and previous lectures this term

Have a question about open lectures? See our FAQs, or email us. 

Follow us on Twitter or like our Facebook page. 

Subscribe to our mailing list to receive up-to-date information on upcoming open lectures and events.

 

 

Upcoming events

Tue
3
Oct

Breaking through despite the odds

Dame Elizabeth Anionwu will explore the factors that led her to overturn a difficult start in life and achieve the many successes in her career

Thu
5
Oct

Electronics and technology in agriculture: The next farming revolution?

Dr Dave Chesmore looks at the advances in technology within agriculture

Fri
6
Oct

Structuring communities for inclusion rather than exclusion

Professor Kevin Timpe suggests how people can create more inclusive communities for people with disabilities

Fri
6
Oct

Silent Shakespeare

An evening of nostalgia, wonderment and silliness

Mon
9
Oct

Sugar: The world corrupted from slavery to obesity

How did a simple commodity, once the prized monopoly of kings and princes, become an essential ingredient in the lives of millions, before mutating yet again into the cause of a global health epidemic?

Tue
10
Oct

Don't let my past be your future

Britain's oldest rebel comes to York to talk about his life experiences of persevering through difficult times with one's dignity and optimism intact.

Wed
11
Oct

Shame and attention

Psychoanalyst Adam Phillips join us to talk around the themes of shame and attention

Wed
11
Oct

Dismembered: How the attack on the state harms us all

Polly Toynbee and David Walker have long prowled the world of modern, dysfunctional, unequal Britain and have, on the whole, painted a disagreeable picture of it...

Thu
12
Oct

Michael Longley: A poetry reading

Writers at York present Michael Longley, one of the foremost Irish and British poets of our times

Mon
16
Oct

How Turner walked to class

Martin Myrone presents a talk on Turner

Tue
17
Oct

Shaking the legal foundations of corporate power POSTPONED

This seminar has been postponed until January. Apologies for any disappointment.

Tue
17
Oct

Monastic legacies: Memory and the biography of place

This lecture introduces the theme of memory in the monastic landscape, before considering a case study of Glastonbury Abbey in detail

Thu
19
Oct

Mystery Plays: The wagons return to York

This lecture will provide an introduction to the history of the York Mystery Plays and hopefully set the mood for the forthcoming event in 2018

Tue
24
Oct

The arts of pilgrimage

This lecture will explore the journey to Mecca and the performance of Hajj, focusing on the skill and creativity of the artists, craftspeople and pilgrims who have all been inspired by this great pilgrimage

Tue
24
Oct

As seen on screen: From The Duchess to Poldark, the role of the historical advisor

Hannah Greig talks about her role as historical advisor for TV programmes such as Poldark

Wed
25
Oct

Opening universities for refugees: Education of displaced youth in South East Asia

This lecture will explore the global responsibilities of academia and will share OUR’s experience in Malaysia and Indonesia

Tue
31
Oct

A breath of fresh air: Sharing air quality knowledge across continents

The SEI York Annual Seminar, in collaboration with IDN and YESI

Wed
1
Nov

Beveridge’s Five Giants

The first in a series of talks about whether the welfare state can survive

Thu
2
Nov

Mission oriented policy and rethinking public value

Economist Mariana Mazzucato presents the annual Ken Dixon lecture

Thu
2
Nov

Dreams without dreaming: A new therapeutic model

Professor Tom Stoneham talks about dreams

Tue
7
Nov

A new paradigm in criminology: Censure, harm and pathology

Social and Political Sciences Seminar Series, in collaboration with the UoY CrimNet

Tue
7
Nov

Sex, stress and food: Impacts of pharmaceuticals in the environment on wildlife

During this seminar you will hear from Dr Kathryn Arnold who will explore the impacts of pharmaceuticals in the environment on wildlife

Wed
8
Nov

Dilemmas of patient choice: Findings from a conversation analytic study of neurology outpatient consultations

Merran Toerien discusses the doctor-patient relationship and its shift from paternalistic

Wed
8
Nov

Want

Part of the Beveridge's Five Giants lecture series

Thu
9
Nov

A brief history of celebrity: Or, what does ‘Dickensian’ mean?

What do Achilles, Napoleon Bonaparte, Lord Byron, Charles Dickens and Taylor Swift have in common? They are all celebrities, in one way or another.

Tue
14
Nov

The future of environmental policy in uncertain times

Are you concerned about the future of environmental policy during these uncertain times? Then this is the talk for you!

Tue
14
Nov

Consolations for a post-truth world

How did we find ourselves in a "post-truth" world of "alternative facts"? And can we get out of it?

Tue
14
Nov

William the Conqueror and the Harrying of the North 1069-70: Contexts and perspectives

This lecture will reflect on the broader context of the infamous Harrying of the North including both the period prior to and after the Norman Conquest in 1066, and what a biographer can know about William the Conquerer,’ and the place of violence against non-combatants in medieval Europe

Wed
15
Nov

Ignorance and Disease

Part of the Beveridge's Five Giants lecture series

Wed
15
Nov

How novels begin: Some nineteenth-century test cases

Poe thought that the entire meaning of a short story was captured in its first sentence: is this the same for novels?

Thu
16
Nov

Reconstructing the Medieval Islamic rock crystal 'industry'

Professor Jeremy Johns (Oxford) joins the York Islamic Art Circle

Thu
16
Nov

Emotions, self-regulation and mental well-being

Dr Dorothea Debus discusses emotions

Tue
21
Nov

Madness: Ideas about insanity

Peter Morrall examines the question 'what is madness?'

Wed
22
Nov

Idleness and Squalor

The fourth in the series of lectures looking at the welfare state

Tue
28
Nov

The age of radicals: Politics in an age of turbulence

Social and Political Sciences Seminar Series with Jamie Bartlett from the Centre for Analysis of Social Media

Tue
28
Nov

“In my end is my beginning”: Celebrating the 250th anniversary of the publication of the final volume of Tristram Shandy

A few thoughts and observations on Vol IX of The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman and how Sterne has influenced contemporary writers and artists.

Tue
28
Nov

Four fish: Fishing, farming and the future of the last wild food

Our relationship with the ocean is undergoing a profound transformation...

Tue
28
Nov

Insults, invective and the unspeakable: Transgressive speech in the Middle Ages

Dr Vicki Blud explores some of the major social, political and cultural conflicts of the late medieval period through contemporary dispute, insult and invective

Wed
29
Nov

21st Century Giants – a panel debate

The last in our series looking at the Five Giants of the Beveridge report

Fri
8
Dec

Transforming care, innovation and leadership through clinical academic roles

Debbie Carrick-Sen talks about clinical academic roles