Being Human 2018 Across the Globe

Being Human 2018 Across the Globe

Being Human 2018 Across The Globe

By Dr Michael Eades, Being Human festival curator

As we ramp up to the 2018 Being Human festival across the UK, we are delighted to announce this series of fantastic collaborations taking place right across the globe. The humanities are international, and so too is the Being Human festival!

In 2017 the Being Human festival featured its first ever strand of international activities. This year we are absolutely delighted to announce that the scale of our events beyond the UK has grown significantly. From Rome to Singapore, Melbourne to New Jersey, we’ve has an incredible response from researchers in the humanities across the globe wanting to get involved with the festival and to make connections to their own local communities and civic contexts.


Australia | University of Melbourne
Being Human in Melbourne

In 2018, the Faculty of Arts at the University of Melbourne will be hosting our first festival hub in Australia. Celebrating the University’s proud history of supporting the humanities and commitment to innovative research, activities will delve deep into our festival theme, inspiring debate and discussions of Origins and Endings in Australia and beyond. Exploring Australia’s status both as a nation of migrants and the longest continuous living culture in the world, activities will bring public audiences into dialogue with research, creativity and critical thinking from across the Faculty of Arts. From culture and identity to governance and sustainability, activities will celebrate and debate what it means to be human in 2018.

USA | Princeton University
Being Human Princeton: Origins and Endings

This autumn, Princeton University will be hosting the first ever Being Human festival hub in the USA. Led by the Princeton University Humanities Council, the home of creative, transformative scholarship and teaching for half a century, the programme this November and early December aims to make humanities research vivid and participatory for school and public audiences. Drawing on expertise in the University’s Pace Center for Civic Engagement, McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning, and Program for Community-Engaged Scholarship, activities will evolve from relationships with Central New Jersey’s diverse communities.


Rome | British School at Rome | 10 October
Journeys Without End

The beginning of a journey, whether sought out or involuntary, is what captures the imagination of narrators, ancient and modern.   The imagination fixes upon the excitement or trauma of leaving, the welcome or hostile encounter at the landing place. More ambiguous however is the imagined end point of a journey, especially for those who are displaced. What endings are imagined at the start? A return, a new home, an exploration? How often does the journey become a perpetual site of wandering – which ancient drama portrayed as a fate worse than death? To explore these themes, this event brings together writers, historians, archaeologists, practitioners, politicians and those working directly on cross-border journeys. The event explores the conditions which make journeys necessary, the condition of wandering in its modern guise, the urgency for a wider spectrum of imagined ‘endings’.

Singapore | Nanyang Technological University & Singapore Writer’s Festival | 3 November, 10:00-11:00
Being Human: The Migrant Transformations

The Sufi poet Rumi says: “This being human is a guesthouse. Every morning a new arrival.” Good writing comes from being open to the plurality and diversity of the world, and being alive to complexities and richness of human experience. The writers on this panel, Adam Aitken, Romesh Gunesekera and Cathy Song, will explore what it means to be human, and how their migrant histories and identities as an Asian writer in Australia, Britain and the US respectively have complicated, enriched and deepened the meaning of the human.
This is the second Being Human festival panel sponsored by the School of Humanities, Nanyang Technological University.

Paris:| University of Kent Paris School of Arts and Culture | 23 November 18:00-19:30
Americans in Paris

Being Human is taking to the streets of Paris in November. Sarah Churchwell and Alex Preston will lead a Hemingway and Fitzgerald-inspired walking tour of Paris, visiting the bars and bistros that they frequented, walking the streets they walked and the places they lived – from the Rue Cardinal Lemoine to the Hotel d’Angleterre. Attendees will learn about the relationship between Hemingway and Fitzgerald, the literature they produced during and about their time in Paris, and the work of the many writers and artists who were also in Paris during this brightest period in the cultural history of the city of lights.