Arts & Humanities

The return of religion or the end of religion?

Jayne Svenungsson, Professor at the Centre for Theology and Religious Studies, Lund University examines the relationship between religion and secularism and the ideological underpinnings of the European concept of religion. She demonstrates that the term religion is a historical product of a secular but mainly Christian Europe, and that it is now more meaningful as an agent of disunity, and […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

Organisational change through non-traditional approaches

Professor Cliff Oswick and daughter Rosie Oswick, based at Cass Business School, City, University of London, are researching new, non-traditional approaches to organisational change. Their interests are in looking beyond traditional attitudes to organisational change that take a problem-centred approach to issues. A genuine interest in social concerns is not generally incorporated into this top-down approach, whereas a bottom-up, non-hierarchical […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

#SocialScience: Mining Twitter for Social and Behavioural Research

A disaster strikes, somewhere in the world. Within minutes there are millions rushing to their screens, letting out their thoughts and feelings. This makes Twitter, along with other social platforms, a rich and timely resource for social and behavioural research. Surprisingly, however, it is a lot less utilised in the social sciences compared with other fields. Tweeters don’t reflect the […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

Re-evaluating Buchanan’s conception of law and law-making

Nobel laureate James Buchanan might not be as well-known to a broader public as other 20th century economists such as Milton Friedman or Maynard Keynes. But in extending the economic behavioural model to democratic politics Buchanan was pivotal. Being an anti-elitist foe of populism, before its ascent he appealed to the democratic electorate to vote for constraining democratic politics by […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

Thinking through livelihood: How a peasantry of princely Rājpuţāna became educated and activist rural citizens of Rajasthan, India

R. Thomas Rosin, Professor Emeritus, explores how folk knowledge and partnerships among tenant farmers in the desert region of Rajasthan, India supported peasant activism and rebellion in the decades around Indian Independence. Demanding livelihoods involving computation and ethno-hydrology prepared them for formal education. Gandhi’s Satyagraha (non-violent resistance) campaigns in British India inspired them as citizens to overturn their domination as […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

How context influences language processing and comprehension

Words, words, words. They’re all around us, on toothpaste tubes, cell phones, cereal packets and television screens – and that’s before we leave the house! We read thousands of words every day and take our human ability to use language very much for granted. Yet language comprehension is a highly sophisticated process. Aided by technologies which track eye movement and […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

The science of singing: When speech and music combine

Speech and music unite in the form of song. Human speech and music both use the characteristics of pitch, loudness, duration and timbre to communicate with the audience. In a series of diverse studies, Professor Jaan Ross of the Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre and his colleagues have investigated how speech and music combine in the form of song. […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

Assessing the role of foreign aid donors and recipients

In his book ‘Re-Inventing Africa’s Development’, Dr Jong-Dae Park, South Korean Ambassador in South Africa, examines the relationships between sub-Saharan Africa aid recipients and its foreign aid donors. Dr Park looks at the inherent limitations of foreign aid and the international development architecture, and the paradox that the region remains poor and underdeveloped, despite massive amounts of aid. He contends […]

Read More…

Arts & Humanities

Envisioning Utopia: Being-in-the-zone and the game of our life

In The Grasshopper: Games, Life and Utopia, Bernard Suits devises a thought experiment using dialogues between Aesop’s Grasshopper and two former ants. These characters debate the definition of “game,” and how game playing might relate to the meaning of life. In Utopia, all activity would be voluntary and intrinsically valuable, rather than necessary and instrumentally valuable. Unfortunately, Suits leaves the […]

Read More…