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Gerald Walters Memorial Lecture

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Baroness Susan Greenfield

Tomorrow's People
by Baroness Susan Greenfield

Wednesday 5 May 2004 at 7pm
in the University Hall.

Admission is free by ticket obtainable from
Clare Henderson, Registrar's Office,
4 W 3.4B, University of Bath, BA2 7AY. 01225 383400.
(Postal requests should be accompanied by an SAE).

Is human nature about to change forever? Can we envisage a world where everything we take for granted about ourselves - imagination, free will, love, learning, memory, desire - becomes obsolete?

At the beginning of the 21st Century, we are standing on the brink of a mind makeover more cataclysmic than anything in our history. The science and technology that are already at the heart of our lives will soon come to transform not just the way we live, but the way we think and feel. And as we learn to appreciate the dynamism and sensitivity of our brain circuitry, the prospect of directly tampering with the very essence of our individuality becomes increasingly likely.

This lecture will offer the prospect of a world free of pain and disease, where we can manipulate our bodies with machinery, our moods with 'smart drugs' and our innate nature with gene therapy, - where what we eat, our relationships, jobs, even the way we fight wars, - will be transformed by technology. Meanwhile, 'home' might become a blur of artificial images, sounds, textures and smells, oblivious to any other reality. In this virtual realm of 'dreams and shadows', the notion of our individual self may, in fact, be obliterated entirely.


The prestigious lecture series is named after Dr Gerald Walters, who was the first Reader in the Humanities at the University and established a reputation for himself for both his scholarship and political achievements. He is credited with bringing recognition across the University of the value of understanding the nature of society in a largely scientific and technological institution. After his sudden death at an early age in 1970, the University established the Gerald Walters Memorial Lecture as the first public lecture series following the granting of the University's charter in 1966 and its arrival to Bath.

Gerald Walters Memorial lecture 2003 - Dr Mo Mowlam

Gerald Walters Memorial lecture 2002 - Sir Harry Kroto FRS

Gerald Walters Memorial lecture 2001 - Martin Bell

For more information, please contact Clare Henderson on 01225 383400


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