Join us for our first ever fully online event! Wherever you are, join us on Zoom for The Awakening: Humanism and the Age of Reason, with historian Charles Freeman and journalist and broadcaster Samira Ahmed.
In recent years, a succession of authors have tried to mount a case for the Christian heritage of the West. Sometimes they argue that Christianity is the fount of all that is good in this world, or for the supremacy of Christian values over all others today. But do these partial accounts of history, starting just 2,000 years ago, miss the real story of human thought and achievement until now?
In The Awakening, Charles Freeman starts earlier – much earlier – in the history of the West, and charts how the refashioning of this history has shaped the world we live in and our understanding of our values. In this account of history, no religion or social movement can take credit for all of human achievement. Instead, the story presents as one of continuous learning, experimentation, and discovery, carried aloft through the ages, and spreading like never before with the development of new technologies, from the Middle Ages until now.
On 27 November, join us on Zoom for a stimulating discussion of how the torch of Enlightenment first was lit, and why a better understanding of our past may be the secret to shaping humanity's future.
About Charles Freeman
Charles Freeman is a freelance academic historian with wide interests in the history of European culture and thought.
While supposedly studying Law at Cambridge he was spending his summers working on archaeological digs in Turkey, Greece or Italy. After graduation he spent a year teaching in Sudan with Voluntary Service Overseas. He has a Master’s Degree in African History and Politics from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London.
He became a full time teacher, and in 1978 was appointed Head of History at St. Clare’s, Oxford where he helped initiate the International Baccalaureate. While at St. Clare’s he was also Lecturer and then Academic Director of the college’s Summer Course in History and Art History in Italy.
About Samira Ahmed
Samira Ahmed is a multi-award winning journalist and broadcaster and a visiting professor of Journalism at Kingston University with a special focus on culture, politics and social change. She won Audio Broadcaster of the Year at the 2020 British Press Guild Awards for her work as a presenter of Front Row on Radio 4 and her podcast How I Found My Voice.