The first day of Being Human has now come to a close and what a day it was! Events across the country brought communities together to grapple with big questions while having some fun at the same time.
In Oxford, festival attendees spent the first day considering what it means to be human and how we can better understand one another. Led by Oxford Brookes University, the all-day programme included lectures, panel discussions and a guided tour of Ashmolean exhibits illuminating what it is to understand other human beings.
In Nottingham, events focused on being human as expressed through subversion and rebellion. A definite highlight of the day was the Burning of the Castle Lights Show depicting the fire set by rioters in 1831 can be viewed from the city looking towards castle rock and the castle walls.
Attendees in Orkney took in an exhibition displaying the creative work of archaeologists, artists, environmental scientists and the local community who recorded artefacts and materials at one of Orkney’s coastal archaeological sites, which is eroding into the sea. The exhibition included photography, 3D laser scanning, measured survey and phone apps.
And here at Being Human headquarters in London, Senate House was abuzz with hundreds of attendees stopping in for a variety of workshops, lectures, and even a selfie corner.
Some of the most popular events here were the Ministry of Information Walking Tours during which attendees learned about the history of communication in World War II and the two Speakers’ Corners, which inspired lively debates over our shared future as ‘digital humans.’ The day capped off with Openness, Secrets and Lies with Sir Nigel Shadbolt, Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Head of the Web and Internet Science Group, University of Southampton and a panel of experts including Heather Brooke, Professor of Journalism at City University London, writer and technologist Ben Hammersley, blogger and activist Doc Rocket and Dr Sebastian Groes, University of Roehampton.
It’s safe to say that if today’s launch is any indication, we’re in for quite the week!
Being Human Team