University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > CRASSH > The Future of History: From Cliodynamics to Degenerative Dystopia, via Science Fiction – gloknos Annual Lecture

The Future of History: From Cliodynamics to Degenerative Dystopia, via Science Fiction – gloknos Annual Lecture

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gloknos Annual Lecture Series – Dr Amanda Rees (University of York)

Amanda Rees has published widely on the history of the field sciences, on the history and sociology of the relationship between humans and other animals, and on the history of prehistory. Her current research reflects an interest in the history of the idea of the future, with a focus on science fiction and futures in literature.

Abstract: Attempts to turn history into a quantitative, predictive science have recently been much in the news – but such approaches depend on treating the past as a reliable guide to the future, and assuming that ‘human nature’ (whatever that means) will remain pretty much unchanged. This approach sits uneasily alongside other claims that the pace and influence of cultural-technical change is now so great that it will fundamentally alter both the scope of society and the shape of humanity. In this talk, we will use science fiction (in particular, the work of HG Wells, Isaac Asimov, Alistair Reynolds and Jodi Taylor) to explore the relationship between these two perspectives, and to consider what lessons, if any, we can learn for the future of history.

Attendance at this lecture is free but spaces are limited, so please email the organiser to reserve your seat.

You can also visit the CRASSH website and gloknos website for more about this event, and others in the series.

gloknos is initially funded for 5 years by the European Research Council through a Consolidator Grant awarded to Dr Inanna Hamati-Ataya for her project ARTEFACT (2017-2022) ERC grant no. 724451.

This talk is part of the CRASSH series.

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