Text full multimedia monochrome

First time here?

Find out more about how The Lecture List works.

Do you organise talks?

Register to tell us about them. The Lecture List is a great place to be listed, but it's also an easy place to upload your information to. It's very simple and costs nothing. Find out more

Help!

Find out what you can do to keep The Lecture List online

Why Humanists Forgot the Future

Liberalism is an ahistorical ideology. At its core it does not recognise time and place- concepts which are very fundamental to the human experience. Liberalism does not recognise the sacrifices of previous generations nor does it give room for the idea of collective sacrifice for a better future.

So why are today’s Humanists just liberals? Today’s SPES inhabits a building that was brought about by mutual sacrifice. Those original founders of this building pooled money together and left this building in trust to the future. Why go to so much effort? Because those founders and their congregation believed it was important to create a shared space to further and protect their joint aims. This action was not just about ideas of liberalism – freedom, choice and individualism. It was much more than this. It was also about creating a better, more ethical community, without God. In some part – perhaps the most important part – this project was about mutualism.

So why hasn’t this generation of inheritors left a similar legacy? In economic terms, you could argue that this generation has leeched off the sacrifices of another, adding very little for the young humanists of today to inherit. The answer is that a purely liberal construct allows for nothing more. Because this society cannot agree on aims larger than letting each member live his own conception and attacking organised religion, it has in effect emptied the grain store and watched the barn rot. It does not have to be like this. I believe this society will lead the way to a new mutualism- devoid of god, grounded in real experience and yet filled with hope and a sense of fulfilled obligations.


Shiv Malik started his career in investigative journalism working for the New Statesman. Reporting from Afghanistan and Pakistan, he has since gone on to write for The Observer, The Sunday Times, Prospect, The Independent on Sunday and The Washington Post amongst many others. In broadcast he has worked extensively for the BBC and Channel 4 News. He is a contributor on radio shows; The World at One, PM, Today, The Asian Network, and The Moral Maze. In 2008 he was involved in a High Court battle with the Manchester Police to protect his sources, and has just published a book about intergenerational conflict called Jilted Generation: How Britain Bankrupted Its Youth. The Evening Standard listed him as one of the most influential Londoners of 2008. He is a strict atheist.

SPES SUNDAY LECTURES ARE FREE AND OPEN TO ALL


Speaker(s):

Shiv Malik | talks

 

Date and Time:

16 January 2011 at 11:00 am

Duration:

2 hours

 

Venue:

Conway Hall
Conway Hall
25 Red Lion Square
London
WC1R 4RL
0207 242 8034
http://www.conwayhall.org.uk/

More at Conway Hall...

 

Tickets:

Free

Available from:

Register to tell a friend about this lecture.

Comments

If you would like to comment about this lecture, please register here.



 

Any ad revenue is entirely reinvested into the Lecture List's operating fund