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The Wheeler building, Chester.

Professor Lisa Oakley, from the University’s School of Psychology, will be the first speaker of the year in the Culture and Society Research Knowledge Exchange Institute’s Public Lecture Series.

All the talks take place from 6pm, in the Wheeler building, Castle Drive, Chester city centre, in Room CRV139. People are just asked to register online in advance.

On Thursday January 19, Lisa will discuss ‘See No Evil: Abuse and Trauma in Religious Contexts’. Lisa, a Professor of Safeguarding and Knowledge Exchange, will focus on cases of abuse in religious contexts, arguing that these demonstrate the necessity to speak about this harm which is often hidden.

The recent Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) made recommendations which impact faith groups and related contexts, but these have been criticised for not going far enough. This lecture will explore these topics, ask questions about what prevention, response and intervention could and should look like for the future, and discuss examples of good practice.

For further information and to reserve a free place, please visit:

In February, Dr Ruth Dockwray, Associate Professor of Popular Music at the University, will present a lecture on the ‘Need for Speed: The Sound of Racing Games’.

Ruth, on Wednesday the 22nd, will explore how audio and music plays a particularly strong role in both the presentation of 'reality' and the narrative arc of video games. With specific focus on racing games, aspects such as the way music has been composed along with the use of surround sound will be considered to show how a sense of realism and immersion is created for the player.

For more details and to register, please go to:

Dr Richard Millington, Programme Leader and Senior Lecturer in German at the University, will then take up the mantle on Wednesday, March 15 with a talk on ‘Tanks on the Streets: The Uprising of 17 June 1953 in East Germany’.

Richard, from the Department of Languages and Cultures, will look at what happened in East Germany 70 years ago. On June 17, 1953, more than 500,000 East Germans took to the streets to demand political change. Richard will talk about the causes of the unrest, what happened on the day, and the aftermath of the demonstrations. He will place the uprising in the broader context of joint-German history and address the significance of the event in German society today.

Please check out for more on the talk and to book.

These events will be followed between April and December 2023, with lectures by contemporary British artists and University alumni, The Singh Twins; University of Chester PhD student researching gambling harm, Jenn Robinson, and poet, short story writer and novelist, Jackie Kay.

Professor Tim Grady, Director of the Culture and Society Research Knowledge Exchange Institute, said: “We’re looking forward to welcoming people to the next in our series of talks sharing diverse research from our academics as well as high-profile guest speakers, and giving more people the opportunity to take part in these discussions.

“The series got off to a great start towards the end of 2022 with a lecture from public archaeologist and presenter on TV’s The Great British Dig, Natasha Billson, and there’s a busy programme ahead, with hopefully something of interest to everyone.”

He added: “If your New Year’s Resolution was to learn something new, explore new subjects, share more of your thoughts and ideas and get involved in more events, we’re very pleased to offer the chance to help to keep them in 2023.”

With almost 200 members across the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, the new Institute aims to strengthen collaborations, boost academic research and increase engagement.

For more information on the future talks in the series please email and keep an eye on where further details will be added.

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