Finding Glasgow: Hidden secrets and lost meaning

Finding Glasgow: Hidden secrets and lost meaning | University of Glasgow

Cultural Encounters: what’s in a letter

How do people around the world connect with each other? For centuries, letters have brought the world to Scotland and Scotland to the world. Join us to rediscover some of Scotland’s letter-writers – from scientists and musicians to politicians, prisoners and royalty. With 5 talks to choose from, each with live music and a different letter-writer, we consider current global and international relationships and explore the place of letters in history, musical culture and everyday life. What is lost in transit and what connections can be found, both between the original letter-writers and readers today?

Fantasy Scotland – a night at the museum

The Hunterian Museum will come to life to celebrate reimagined histories and heritage. From Peter Pan to Outlander, modern Scottish fantasy as portrayed in literature, film and TV, provides the theme for this dazzling event. As well as seeing the museum bathed in atmospheric lighting, visitors can enjoy musical and literary performance, games, themed activity stations and a special guest appearance by The Hunterian’s Homo Habilis, formerly hidden from public view for decades.

What real life creature inspired the Loch Ness Monster? How did the Egyptian mummy Lady Shep-en-hor end up in Scotland? Where in Scotland might you find evidence of the legends of King Arthur? Can you find the University of Glasgow equivalent of Hogwart’s Sorting Hat?
Just some of the questions you may be able to answer if you join us.

Lost, Abandoned and Forgotten

This photographic exhibition invites an alternative look at abandoned buildings. The images are collated by urban explorers, a subcultural community who discover, explore and photograph derelict buildings. They follow a simple code – ‘take only photographs, leave only footprints’ – to digitally preserve these urban relics and counter collective forgetting. These images belong to participants of a three-year research project that examined the societal value of obsolete buildings. This exhibit encourages people to reimagine abandonment and gives voice to neglected heritage.

Ludovic Mann and the Eclipse Eating Monster

In 1937, archaeologist Ludovic Mann painted a 4000-year-old prehistoric rock-art panel, the Cochno Stone (Faifley, West Dunbartonshire). He believed prehistoric people carved symbols on the rock to tell the story of how they worked out how to predict eclipses and so defeated the monster that ate the sun. Visitors flocked to the site and damaged to the stone, so it was buried in 1965 to protect it. In 2016, a team from the University of Glasgow uncovered the Cochno Stone for the first time in 51 years and found that much of Mann’s paint survived. This event will include a public talk about Ludovic Mann’s handiwork and a team of archaeologists from the University of Glasgow will work together with artist Hannah Sackett to help pupils from local schools design their own comics telling the story of Mann and the Eclipse Eating Monster. This is a celebration of an amazing archaeological story in the urban fringe of Glasgow.

New Light On Old Books

Come along and unlock the secrets of medieval manuscripts! This event will showcase and explain some of the digital tools and techniques that libraries and researchers are using to uncover lost details of centuries-old books. You can see a manuscript which is over 500 years old and investigate the history of its production and its readers. You will also have the opportunity to get creative with electric ink, 3D printing and chat to researchers about how they are using new forms of digital technology to explore our written cultural heritage.

Postcard Poetry: Philip Hobsbaum’s inclusive writers’ groups

A very special reading and discussion with some of Glasgow’s most celebrated writers, all of whom were encouraged early on by workshop pioneer Philip Hobsbaum. Join poet Liz Lochhead (Scots Makar 2011-2016), Marcella Evaristi (playwright, screenwriter) and Bernard Maclaverty (novelist, short story writer and screenwriter) for an open house of creativity. Seamus Heaney praised Hobsbaum’s “energy, generosity, belief in community”; tonight we’ll explore the value of the contemporary writers’ group and invite contributions on a postcard from the audience! Linked workshops will run with local writing groups at Glasgow Women’s Library, University of Glasgow Special Collections and The Mitchell Library.

Still Alice

Julianne Moore (who won an Academy Award for Best Actress) plays Alice Howland, a renowned linguistics professor, happily married with three grown children, who starts to forget her words. When she receives a diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, Alice and her family find their bonds thoroughly tested.

This free screening of Still Alice will be followed by an informal discussion about dementia and loss, facilitated by members of the Glasgow End of Life Studies Group, an interdisciplinary academic research team based on the Crichton Campus. Refreshments be provided during this event which is part of the cinema’s Coffee Club series.

Women and War: Margaret Cavendish’s Bell in Campo

Margaret Cavendish’s Bell in Campo (1662) is a powerful political drama by a pioneering seventeenth-century woman writer, written in the wake of the English Civil Wars. It follows a group of women who insist on serving on the frontline, forming an army of their own. Their struggle to be recognised as soldiers is paralleled by the story of the women left behind by the war, including two war widows.

This event consists of a discussion of the play, and reading by Glasgow University students and staff: public participation in the reading is also warmly encouraged!

Finding Meaning in Myth

Find the meaning in myth! Come to this free workshop to find out how ancient myths and legends are updated for new audiences. Why do authors return to the stories of Medea, Oedipus or Troy, how do they update these stories, and what can these myths tell us about our own time? Events include:

  • a dramatic reading by the poet and playwright Liz Lochhead, author of the mythological plays Medea (2000) and Thebans (2003).
  • a talk by the broadcaster and classicist Edith Hall, entitled Do Women Hear Ancient Myths Differently from Men
  • a creative writing session on the topic of ancient myth – no experience necessary!
  • flash talks on myth and its adaptation, from the Renaissance to today.

Hidden Tongues and Missing Sounds

How is an ‘r’ indifferent in English and Arabic? Can drumming help you learn to speak English better? Why do sounds go missing when people talk fast, and how do listeners find them again? These workshops combine music and science in a set of activities ranging from drumming to ultrasound to help immigrants and bilinguals appreciate the complexity and diversity of their various languages, and to help high school students learn how discoveries about language and the mind are made..

Lost Limbs and Posthuman Enhancement

Prosthetic technology was intended to help those who had lost limbs, but as technology improves we may access further human enhancements. Learn about prosthetics of the past and future and explore speculative, futuristic designs before joining our panel for a discussion about technology and our changing humanity.

Write the Future: Science Fiction Writing Workshop

Calling all young writers! This workshop will teach you to write science fiction and encourage you to think about how your writing can change the world. Three winners’ work will be published online – a chance to share your futuristic visions. Suitable for secondary school students.