Join us for an evening discussion event at the museum and online. Everyone’s welcome to help us explore the latest ideas in science and technology.
The next event will take place on Thursday 30 September 2021 from 18.30. This will be a ‘hybrid’ event, taking place both at the museum and online—the talk will be given live in the Café and will also be broadcast on Zoom. When you book free tickets, you will be able to choose which version of the event you would like to attend.
Fairies Photographed! The Case of the Cottingley Fairies
Professor Christine Ferguson
In December 1920, The Strand Magazine published a series of sensational photographs taken by two young girls from Cottingley that allegedly showed real-life fairies dancing at the bottom of their garden. Their authenticity was vouched for by no less a person than world-famous author and spiritualist Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes. The images immediately triggered a fierce public debate: were they evidence of the existence of otherworldly nature spirits, of the technical craft and duplicity of their creators, or of the suspect nature of photography itself? The cameras used to produce the pictures, along with Elsie Wright’s famous 1983 ‘confession’ letter, are today held in the collection of the National Science and Media Museum.
In this talk, Professor Christine Ferguson, Chair in English Studies at the University of Stirling and Principal Investigator on the Media of Mediumship project, will discuss what these objects can tell us about the long-standing relationship between technological innovation and alternative spiritual belief in modern Britain.
In a short flash event to accompany the talk, Cecil Green Arts will perform an exciting, beautiful show of the illuminated faeries they have made, inspired by this story. Sponsored by Bradford 2025 City of Culture Bid.
What you need to know
- This event is free, but booking is required
- Donations are welcome! You can donate online
- Café Scientifique is suitable for all ages and abilities, but some events may have adult themes or content
Information for online attendees
- The online event will take place via Zoom
- After booking you will be able to access the event link by logging into your account. If you have any problems accessing the link on the day of the event, please contact email@example.com
- The stream will be live from 18.20 so you can test your sound
What is Café Scientifique?
Café Scientifique is a friendly and collaborative exploration of the latest breakthroughs in science. You’ll hear about, discuss and debate some of the most recent advances and discoveries in science and healthcare, and their importance to society.
Each event has a theme—they’ve included everything from the latest in physics to the science of music, from nanotechnology to biology.
Café Scientifique is a great way to meet new people and exercise your mind. Discuss the discoveries you’ve seen in the headlines, or learn something completely new.