Jack Cunningham and Lyndsay MuirLecturers from Bishop Grosseteste University (BGU) in Lincoln will speak at a new TEDx event this October.

Lincoln is hosting its first ever TEDx event, TEDx Brayford Pool, on 28 October 2017. The theme of TEDx Brayford Pool is ‘Past. Present. Future’ and the event will highlight the best and most current ideas generated in Lincoln and Lincolnshire.

Dr Jack Cunningham, BGU’s programme leader for Theology and Reader in Ecclesiastical History, has been selected as one of fifteen speakers and will present a keynote talk about Robert Grosseteste. Jack is a core member of the Ordered Universe Project that brings together scientists and historians to prepare the work of Robert Grosseteste for publication.

“I will be talking about Robert Grosseteste, especially his work as a 13th-century scientist, and setting out to explode the myth that the Middle Ages were the ‘Dark Ages’ full of superstition and ignorance,” said Dr Cunningham.

“Grosseteste had some very sophisticated ways of looking at the world: he was the first person to know what caused a rainbow and he has been called the first scientist.

“Most impressive is his idea about cosmology and how the universe began, which is remarkably similar to the modern Big Bang theory.

“I want to show that even though he worked 800 years ago with little access to the modern tools of science, he may well have had an enormous impact on our modern understanding of the universe we live in.

“In fact, Robert Grosseteste is the perfect figure to illustrate the fact that the past, present and future are always inextricably linked.”

Lyndsay Muir, senior lecturer in Drama at BGU, is also speaking at the event and will deliver a keynote titled ‘Tea with Trans – what’s on (and off) the menu’. Her talk will discuss self-identified trans people creatively orchestrating conversations with the wider population.

Lyndsay said, “There are all sorts of myths circulating about trans people, so what if you could just sit down and have a chat with someone and find out what they’re like?

“The problem is where would you start, if you didn’t know someone and didn’t want to be rude or offend them? The idea is to have a conversational menu that gives you somewhere to start – their name, what they enjoy talking about and what they really wouldn’t want to discuss.

“In my talk I’ll be explaining how this idea evolved, what it hopes to do and how it has been tried out.”

Meanwhile at the event Dr Elinor Vettraino, programme leader for Business and Enterprise at BGU, will be running two ‘fishbowl’ sessions with groups of speakers focusing on moving forward and future thinking.

TED began in 1984 as a conference for Technology, Entertainment and Design, but today covers almost any topic. Independently organised TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world.

The talks will take place before a live audience and will be available to view online after the event.

TEDx Brayford Pool will take place on 28 October at the Collection and Usher Gallery.

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