Research Student Seminar: ‘The Last Asylum’ with Professor Barbara Taylor, Queen Mary

The-Last-Asylum-A-Memoir-of-Date: Thursday 5 June 2014
Time: 6.30-8pm (followed by dinner and drinks)
Venue: 30 Russell Square, room 407
We are very pleased to invite all Birkbeck PhD students to the final Research Student Seminar of this academic year, which takes place on Thursday 5 June.
Professor Barbara Taylor (Queen Mary) recently published a book, which has had a lot of attention: The Last Asylum (Penguin 2014). She describes it as a “memoir-cum-history of mental health care in late 20th-century Britain.” She will be discussing this book in the context of her other historical work, especially her recent writings on psychoanalytic history (including her book with Adam Phillips, On Kindness) and her current research on the history of solitude.
Professor Taylor asked if she could be interviewed to make the seminar “informal and chatty” and Simon Jarrett has agreed to do this. For those of you who don’t know him, Simon is a Wellcome Trust doctoral researcher at Birkbeck. His research, titled  ‘The road to Dr Down’s idiot asylum’ looks at changing Enlightenment ideas about ‘idiocy’ in the long eighteenth century, culminating in the development of idiot asylums in the 1860s. He worked for many years in services and projects supporting people with learning disabilities, including an unforgettable spell as a nursing assistant in a long-stay hospital.
The seminar takes place in room 30 Russell Square, room 407 and will be followed by drinks and dinner at Olivelli’s on Store St, so please let Guy Beckett know ( if you’re planning on joining us afterwards and I’ll book the table.
One final piece of housekeeping: Dr Alice Rio’s seminar on 8 May was postponed because it clashed with a John Arnold seminar. We had a few administration hitches that meant the postponement was announced rather late. The new date will be in November and we will let everyone know the date as soon as it has been confirmed.

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