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TORCH | The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities

The University of Oxford is home to an impressive range and depth of research activities in the Humanities. TORCH | The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities is a major new initiative that seeks to build on this heritage and to stimulate and support research that transcends disciplinary and institutional boundaries. Here we feature some of the networks and programmes, as well as recordings of events, and offer insights into the research that they make possible.

# Episode Title Description People Date
101 FRIGHT Friday - Fear and Flesh: Gothic Medicine Dr Barry Murname gives a talk for the FRIGHT Friday series of talks, held in the Ashmolean Museum on 25th November 2016. Barry Murname 12 Dec 2016
102 The Dodo in the Museum Director of the Museum of Natural History, Paul Smith, gives a presentation at ‘The Oxford Dodo: Culture at the Crossroads’ Paul Smith 07 Dec 2015
103 On Violence, Gender, and Sacrifice: Old Stories and New Reflections Part of the Sacrifice Revisited event Kimberley Hutchings 22 May 2017
104 Martin Luther - Renegade and Prophet Part of the Book at Lunchtime series Lyndal Roper, Laura Marcus, Simeon Zahl, Jas Elsner 08 Nov 2016
105 Ethnicity and Politics in the Early Modern Ottoman Empire: The Kurdish Case Dr. Djene Bajalan talks as part of the Language and Community from the Armenian to Iranian Plateaux series Djene Bajalan 26 Jan 2016
106 Crossing Boundaries: Medievalists in Cross-Disciplinary Conversation Launch event for the TORCH programme Oxford Medieval Studies Emma Dillon, Henrike Lähnemann, David Wallace, Chris Wickham 13 Jan 2016
107 Unconscious Memory and Mental Space Professor Michael Burke and Dr Sebastian Groes Michael Burke, Sebastian Groes, Ben Morgan 26 Jan 2015
108 Creative Commons In Everyone's Interests - the highlights Panel discussion on what it means to invest in the humanities Andrew Hamilton, Earl Lewis, Hermione Lee, Charlotte Higgins 04 Feb 2014
109 What made a Jewish country home Jewish? Leora Auslander (University of Chicago) gives the keynote talk for the JCH conference. Leora Auslander 23 May 2018
110 Schloss Freienwalde: a Jewish restoration of a Prussian legacy Martin Sabrow (ZZF Potsdam/ Humboldt University) gives a talk for the JCH conference's third session; The Political World of the Jewish Country House. Martin Sabrow 23 May 2018
111 Aristotle on Perceiving Objects A discussion of Anna Marmodoro's book Anna Marmodoro, Ophelia Deroy, Richard Sorabji, Rowland Stout 14 May 2015
112 Imagining the Divine: Art and the Rise of World Religions Mary Beard and Neil MacGregor in conversation undefined 24 Jan 2018
113 Robespierre and the Politicians' Terror The TORCH Crisis, Extremes, and Apocalypse network hosted a talk on 'Robespierre and the Politicians’ Terror' with Marisa Linton (Kingston University). Marisa Linton 10 May 2017
114 Chris Fletcher on Libraries in the Digital Age Chris Fletcher talks as part of the "What does it mean to be human in the digital age?" event Chris Fletcher 26 Jan 2016
115 Creative Commons Storming Utopia The director from the Pegasus theatre in Oxford, talks about his upcoming theatre piece. Kirsten Shepherd-Barr, Wes Williams 23 Jun 2017
116 How the Mouse Lost its Tail, Or, Lamarck's Dangerous Idea Speaker: Jessica Riskin (University of Stanford) Jessica Riskin 19 Jun 2017
117 Alison Light on 'Common People' The author discusses her new book, exploring the interplay between fiction and history, the redefinition of the common, and family history Alison Light 08 Dec 2014
118 Gunnersbury Park, 1835-1925: a Rothschild Family Villa Diana Davis gives a talk for the JCH conference's second panel, Villas and Chateaux. Diana Davis 23 May 2018
119 #NeverHillary vs #NeverTrump The US Election on Social Media Panel Discussion Philip N Howard, Gemma Joyce, Matthew Lee Anderson, Yin Yin Lu 01 Feb 2017
120 Interview with Dr Sophie Ratcliffe Practical Medical Humanities Dr Sophie Ratcliffe 30 Nov 2015
121 Ethnicised Religion and Sacralised Ethnicity in the Past and the Present An expert panel discusses the phenomenon of ethnicisation of religious identifications focussing especially on the nexus of religious, ethnic and national identifications in colonial, anti-colonial and postcolonial settings from Ireland to South Asia. Elisabeth Bolorinos Allard, Faisal Devji, Peter Leary, Ilya Afanasyev 22 Feb 2018
122 Creative Commons Jay Stewart - What Does Diversity Mean to Me? Opening event in TORCH Headline Series exploring 'Humanities & Identities' Jay Stewart 28 Mar 2017
123 Factors Affecting Iranian Identities from the Early Islamic Era to the Sixteenth Century Ahmad Ashraf gives a talk as part of the The Long History of Identity, Ethnicity, and Nationhood workshop Ahmad Ashra 04 Jan 2016
124 Jok Madut Jok - What is a decolonial curriculum? Jok Madut Jok, TORCH / Mellon Global South Visiting Professor, University of Oxford, gives a talk for the workshop, What is a Decolonial Curriculum? Held at TORCH on 28th November 2018. Jok Madut Jok 15 Feb 2019
125 Living Bilingual Professor Elleke Boehmer (Director of TORCH) delivers a talk as part of the Creative Multilingualism and TORCH Bitesize Talks at Linguamania, Ashmolean Museum. Elleke Boehmer 22 Feb 2017
126 Creative Commons Andy Warhol's Girls Eleri Watson explores Andy Warhol's relationships with women. Eleri Watson 07 Jun 2016
127 Repositioning Women's Health Care: A Case Study on Women Who Survived Ebola in Sierra Leone Part of the Humanities & Identities Lunchtime Series Elleke Boehmer, Fatou Wurie 27 Jun 2017
128 The Prospect of Global History How can global history can be applied instead of advocated? James Belich, Elleke Boehmer, Richard Drayton, Hannah-Louise Clark 27 Jul 2016
129 Heroes and Villains in Game of Thrones Dr Carolyne Larrington gives a talk about Game of Thrones and the often complicated morality its characters have. Part of the Ashmolean Live Friday event on 29th January 2016. Carolyne Larrington 10 Feb 2016
130 Surrealism’s Political-Theological Afterlife: Benjamin—Blumenberg—Taubes Speaker: Julia Ng (Goldsmith's) Julia Ng 19 Jun 2017
131 The Dodo in Literature Literary scholar Kirsten Shepherd-Barr’s presentation at ‘The Oxford Dodo: Culture at the Crossroads’ Kirsten Shepherd-Barr 07 Dec 2015
132 Creative Commons Are the humanities worth investing in? Knowledge Exchange Fellow Oliver Cox (@OliverJWCox) from The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities (TORCH) asked members of the public, students and academics in Oxford whether humanities subjects are worth investing in. Oliver Cox 16 Jan 2014
133 Postcolonial Poetics: A Book at Lunchtime A Book at Lunchtime seminar with Elleke Boehmer, author of Postcolonial Poetics, joined by Dr Malachi McIntosh, Professor Ben Morgan, Professor Richard Drayton and Professor Robert Young (chair). Elleke Boehmer, Malachi McIntosh, Ben Morgan, Richard Drayton 14 Feb 2019
134 Creative Commons Whither Death? Helen Swift and Jessica Goodman discuss the one day conference 'Whither Death?' Helen Swift, jessica Goodman 28 Mar 2017
135 Book at Lunchtime: Arcadia A Book at Lunchtime discussion of Iain Pears' interactive novel Arcadia Elleke Boehmer, Alex Butterworth, Emily Short, Iain Pears 07 Mar 2016
136 Disability Narratives and Histories Launch event for the TORCH Disability and Curriculum Diversity series. Marie Tidball, Helen Hillman, Richard Sandell, Elleke Boehmer 04 Jul 2017
137 Wildlife in the Anthropocene: Conservation after Nature An interdisciplinary discussion of Jamie Lorimer's book Jamie Lorimer, William Beinart, Daniel Grimley, Nikolaj Lübecker 06 May 2015
138 Interview with Emily Troscianko Discussion of Kafka's Cognitive Realism Emily Troscianko 26 Mar 2014
139 Reading Beyond the Code A Book at Lunchtime Seminar with Terrence Cave, Deirdre Wilson, Ben Morgan (Worcester College, Oxford), Professor Robyn Carston (Linguistics, UCL). Chaired by Professor Philip Bullock (TORCH Director). Terrence Cave, Deirdre Wilson, Ben Morgan, Robyn Carston 14 Dec 2018
140 Rescue in the Face of Danger: Benjamin, Goethe, Sebald Speaker: Carolin Duttlinger (University of Oxford) Carolin Duttlinger 19 Jun 2017
141 Dystopia Today The TORCH Crisis, Extremes, and Apocalyse network have hosted an event on 'Dystopia Today' with Greg Claeys (Royal Holloway, University of London). Greg Claeys 10 May 2017
142 Interview with Dr Andrew Papanikitas The importance of Medical Humanities in good medical practice Dr Andrew Papanikitas 30 Nov 2015
143 Common People: The History of an English Family An interdisciplinary panel of scholars discuss Alison Light's book Alison Light, Lyndal Roper, Laura Marcus, Selina Todd 11 Dec 2014
144 Where's the Virtue in the Humanities? How can the Liberal Humanities own up to – and promote – its public service as a matrix of civic virtue? Nigel Biggar, Donald Drakeman, Steven Biel, Jonathan Bate 04 Mar 2014
145 Creative Commons Humanities Graduates and the British Economy Humanities Graduates and the British Economy. Shearer West, Sir Adam Roberts, Philip Kreager, Stephen Tuck 01 Aug 2013
146 What is the Modern? Temporality, Aesthetics, and Global Melancholy This talk from TORCH Global South Visiting Professor Supriya Chaudhuri will interrogate the temporality of the modern, the aesthetics of the modern, and as a somewhat cryptic afterthought, the mood of the modern, here categorized as melancholy. Supriya Chaudhuri 09 Apr 2019
147 Creative Commons Lost in Print? Linton Kwesi Johnson and the Reggae Music Archive Louisa Layne investigates the reggae music archive, exploring music and poetry through Linton Kwesi Johnson’s dub club. Louisa Layne 13 Jun 2018
148 The Monk, the Memorist, the Mushroom and the MRI Discover how we create and store ideas, and how modern neuroscience process 16th century theories on memory. Dan Holloway 13 Jun 2018
149 A Celebration of the Centenary of the Birth of Olive Gibbs 100 years since the Representation of the People Act, the act which gave women the vote. Susanna Pressel, Liz Woolley, Bruce Kent, Simon Gibbs 26 Feb 2018
150 Bilingualism and the Internet Scott Hale (Senior Data Scientist) delivers a talk as part of the Creative Multilingualism and TORCH Bitesize Talks at Linguamania, Ashmolean Museum. Scott Hale 22 Feb 2017
151 The Future of the Professions In an era when machines can out-perform human beings at most tasks what are the prospects for employment? Richard Susskind, Daniel Susskind, Joshua Hordern, Vili Lehdonvirta 16 Feb 2016
152 Live and Let Die - in Greek Epic Almut Fries explores the iconography of the black-figured wine jug in this TORCH Bite-Size talk at the Ashmolean Museum LiveFriday Almut Fries 08 Feb 2016
153 The Cult of Saints Dr Bryan Ward-Perkins introduces a new research project which examines the origins and development of the cult of Christian saints. Bryan Ward-Perkins 12 Sep 2014
154 How does a curriculum introduce and structure alternate worldviews and knowledges? Blue Weiss and Mia Liyanage, Common Ground Oxford, give a talk for the workshop, What is a Decolonial Curriculum? Held at TORCH on 28th November 2019. Blue Weiss, Mia Liyanage 19 Feb 2019
155 The Heterarchical Director - A Model of Authorship for the Twenty-First Century The keynote talk for 'Collaboration in Theatre symposium' at the University of Oxford, 19 October 2018. Duška Radosavljević 18 Dec 2018
156 Autonomy, Community, Destiny: Re-Imagining Disability The second seminar in the Disability and Curriculum Diversity series at TORCH Elizabeth Frood, Dom Hyams, Marie Tidball 07 Dec 2017
157 Hidden Beneath the Surface: Untold Tales of Neurodivergence and Mental Difference in Oxford World Mental Health Day 2017 Dan Holloway, Miranda Reilly, Sonia Boue, Marie Tidball 18 Oct 2017
158 Creative Commons Ellah Wakatama Allfrey - What Does Diversity Mean to Me? Opening event in TORCH Headline Series exploring 'Humanities & Identities' Ellah Wakatama Allfrey 28 Mar 2017
159 Do Objects Speak? Wen-chin Ouyang (Professor of Arabic and Comparative Literature at the School of Oriental and African Studies) delivers a talk as part of the Creative Multilingualism and TORCH Bitesize Talks at Lingumania. Wen-Chin Ouyang 21 Feb 2017
160 Tom Chatfield on Humans and Machines in the Digital Age Tom Chatfield talks as part of the "What does it mean to be human in the digital age?" event Tom Chatfield 26 Jan 2016
161 Too Valuable to Die? Silke Ackermann, Nigel Biggar and Liz Bruton debate the ethics of science and scientists going to war Silke Ackermann, Nigel Biggar, Liz Bruton 14 Oct 2015
162 Sommerfrische, Connoisseurship, Scandal and the Temporary in the Jewish Country House in Austria: Baron Nathaniel Rothschild’s castle in Reichenau and Dr. Josef Kranz’ Villa Raach Mimi Schmidt (Jindal Global University) gives a talk for the JCH conference's second session; Villas and Chateaux. Mimi Schmidt 23 May 2018
163 James Joyce and the Phenomenology of Film Book at Lunchtime, James Joyce and the Phenomenology of Film Katherine Morris, Ulrika Maude, Jeri Johnson, Cleo Hanaway-Oakley 16 Feb 2018
164 Consequentialist Extremism: Present Sacrifices for Future Dreams in the Justification of Violence Part of the Sacrifice Revisited event Jonathan Leader Maynard 22 May 2017
165 The Rise of Endless War The TORCH Crisis, Extremes, and Apocalypse network hosted a talk on 'The Rise of Endless War' with Professor Samuel Moyn (Harvard University). samuel moyn 10 May 2017
166 Language, Crisis, and Affect The TORCH Crisis, Extremes, and Apocalypse network hosted a talk ‘Language, crisis and affect: Muted emotions in Heinrich von Kleist’s Michael Kohlhaas’ with Dr Tobias Heinrich (University of Oxford). Tobias Heinrich 28 Feb 2017
167 The Concept of 'Umma' in Early Islam Fred Donner (University of Chicago) addresses the nebulous, often misunderstood concept of 'umma' in early Islam Fred Donner 07 Jul 2016
168 Ted Hughes: The Unauthorised Life Jonathan Bate, Anne Farrar Donovan, Seamus Perry and Oliver Taplin discuss life-writing, poetry and the poet Jonathan Bate, Seamus Perry, Oliver Taplin, Anne Farrar Donovan 20 Oct 2015
169 The Real, the True, and Critique: Mysticism in the Study of Religion A lecture by Amy Hollywood with response from Vincent Gillespie and Joana Serrado. Amy Hollywood, Vincent Gillespie, Joana Serrado, Kate Kilpatrick 18 Jun 2015
170 Orchestral Musicians' Experiences: Inside Out In this TORCH Talk, Dr Cayenna Ponchione-Bailey presents on 'Orchestral Musicians' Experiences: Inside Out' at the Ashmolean Museum's Supersonic LiveFriday. Cayenna Ponchione-Bailey 04 Jul 2017
171 Ernst Kantorowicz and the Politics of Political Theology Speaker: Martin Ruehl (University of Cambridge) Martin Ruehl 19 Jun 2017
172 Everything in Everything: Anaxagoras's Metaphysics Book at Lunchtime discussion Anna Marmodoro, Elleke Boehmer, Naoya Iwata, Simona Aimar 06 Jun 2017
173 Drawing the Line: Toward an Aesthetic of Transitional Justice This Postcolonial Writing and Theory Seminar is on 'Drawing the Line: Toward an Aesthetic of Transitional Justice' with speaker Carrol Clarkson (University of Amsterdam). Carrol Clarkson 06 Jan 2017
174 Digital Unwrapping: Homer, Herculaneum, and the Scroll from Ein Gedi With Brent Seales (Professor of Computer Science, University of Kentucky) Brent Seales 19 Aug 2016
175 Creative Commons Philip Pullman's 'His Dark Materials' Margaret Kean explores how Philip Pullman plays with the idea of communication across different media in his trilogy Margaret Kean 04 Mar 2016
176 Creative Commons Valour, betrayal and desire: heroes and villains in Indian paintings Nisha Somasundaram explores both male and female heroes and demons in Indian epics in this TORCH Bite-Size talk at the Ashmolean Museum LiveFriday. Nisha Somasundaram 09 Feb 2016
177 Phenomenology and Health A highlights video from the one-day conference Andrew Papanikitas, Anna Kirkengen 15 Jun 2015
178 Olivia Slater presents, Place in research: Theory, methodology, and methods. Eve Tuck and Marcia McKenzie (Routledge, 2014) Olivia Slater gives a talk for the workshop, What is a Decolonial Curriculum? Held at TORCH on 28th November 2018. Olivia Slater 19 Feb 2019
179 What We Cannot Know Part of the TORCH Book at Lunchtime series Marcus du Sautoy, Anita Avramides, Chrystalina Antoniades, Ben Morgan 21 Oct 2016
180 Why We Need the Humanities How has humanities scholarship influenced biomedical research and civil liberties and how can scholars serve the common good? Donald Drakeman, Richard Ekins, Jay Sexton, Helen Small 27 Jul 2016
181 Thinking with Literature A Book at Lunchtime discussion with Terence Cave about literature's links to cognitive science. Terence Cave, Marina Warner, Ilona Roth, Deirdre Wilson 28 Apr 2016
182 Closing Reflections The closing reflections of speakers Professor Joshua Hordern and Stephen Bergman. Joshua Hordern, Professor Stephen Bergman 08 Mar 2016
183 The Dodo, Animal Icons and De-Extinction Environmental researcher Paul Jepson’s presentation at ‘The Oxford Dodo: Culture at the Crossroads’ Paul Jepson 07 Dec 2015
184 Suffering History: Phenomenology at the Intersection of Disease and Illness A presentation by Austin Argentieri. Austin Argentieri 10 Jun 2015
185 Creative Commons Senia Paseta on Irish Nationalist Women Dr Paseta explores women's history and the nationalist narrative in Ireland. Senia Paseta 01 Dec 2014
186 Photography and Tibet Author, Clare Harris, talks about her book on photography in Tibet - a place that has for centuries been a source of fascination for outsiders and a captivating yet troublesome subject for photographers. Clare Harris, Thupten Kelsang, Elizabeth Edwards, Geraldine Johnson 05 Apr 2018
187 FRIGHT Friday - Stretched to Breaking Point Dan Holloway gives a talk for the FRIGHT Friday series of talks, held in the Ashmolean Museum on 25th November 2016. Dan Holloway 12 Dec 2016
188 Ilya Afanasyev and Nicholas S. M. Matheou Introduction Opening remarks from Ilya Afanasyev and Nicholas S M Matheou Ilya Afanasyev, Nicholas S M Matheou 26 Jan 2016
189 Making Sense of Kurdish Identity During the Middle Ages: Political Factors and Cultural Crossroad Boris James gives a talk as part of the The Long History of Identity, Ethnicity, and Nationhood workshop Boris James 04 Jan 2016
190 What Have the Humanities to Teach the Modern University? Part of the Humanities and the Public Good series Teresa Morgan, Stephen Whitefield, David Ford, Jonathan Phillips 19 Mar 2014
191 Discussion: How does a curriculum introduce and structure alternate worldviews and knowledges? Blue Weiss, Mia Liyanage, Nana Oforiatta Ayim, Supriya Chaudhuri, and Afua Hirsch, discuss what a decolonial curriculum would look like, part of the workshop, What is a Decolonial Curriculum? Held at TORCH on 28th November 2018. Blue Weiss, Mia Liyanage, Nana Oforiatta Ayim, Supriya Chaudhuri 19 Feb 2019
192 Are the Humanities More Digital than the Sciences? A panel discussion with Howard Hotson, Andrew Prescott, Dave De Roure and Heather Viles Howard Hotson, Andrew Prescott, Dave De Roure, Heather Viles 02 Mar 2016
193 Cultural Citizenship in India: Politics, Power and Media Cultural Citizenship in India argues that citizenship is an ongoing and evolving discursive project. Further, it studies the role of culture and different media in the process of citizen-making by taking postcolonial India as its case study. Lion König, Polly O'hanlon, Sundas Ali, Peter Frankopan 13 Jul 2018
194 Interview with Dr Marion Lynch Medical Humanities and Narratives Dr Marion Lynch 30 Nov 2015
195 Disaster Drawn: Comics and Picturing Violence Keynote lecture by Hilary Chute as part of the Documenting Trauma conference. Hilary Chute 05 Sep 2017
196 The Silk Roads: A New History of the World Peter Frankopan discusses his new book with Averil Cameron, Robert Moore and Elleke Boehmer Peter Frankopan, Averil Cameron, Robert Moore, Elleke Boehmer 27 Oct 2015
197 FRIGHT Friday - Fear of Cats and Other Phobias Professor Sally Shuttleworth gives a talk for the FRIGHT Friday series of talks, held in the Ashmolean Museum on 25th November 2016. Sally Shuttleworth 12 Dec 2016
198 Fundraising through Digital Michael Docherty (Cancer Research UK) on how clicktivists, slacktivists and hacktivists are helping us beat cancer sooner. Michael Docherty 03 Aug 2015
199 Interview with Professor Stephen Lammers Medical Humanities and Narratives Professor Stephen Lammers 30 Nov 2015
200 Exploring the Two Cultures Professor Larry Squire and Dr Simon Kemp Larry Squire, Simon Kemp 26 Jan 2015